A good news/bad news half of football for the Vikings. The good news: The defense has looked awesome. The defensive line has looked beyond awesome. I actually feared for Ben Roethlisberger’s life there for a little while. So many Vikings were converging in the backfield that they started knocking each other silly: Jared Allen had an unexpected meeting with Kevin Williams, and let’s just say K-Will got the better of that encounter.
The bad news: The offensive line does not have its stuff together. The first series was a mess of false starts. Gus Frerotte was on the ground way too many times. There were no holes for Adrian Peterson or Chester Taylor to exploit. A couple good passes by Frerotte got the Vikings down for Adrian’s touchdown plunge, but that was almost all Gus (and Visanthe Shiancoe actually holding on to a pass). Pittsburgh is good at disguising their defenses and that has been part of the problem, but still – you expect better from your O-Line in a dress rehearsal game like this.
Brad Childress clearly wanted to establish the run game tonight and it hasn’t happened. Adrian has looked frustrated. The pass has only been sporadically effective, partly because Bernard Berrian and Sidney Rice are both out, and partly because Gus has been running for his life at times. The skinny on Gus is that his arm strength is still all there and he can make throws that Tarvaris Jackson simply can’t make at this point. I still think Tarvaris has to be the man though.