Yes, the Vikings can beat the Lions today. Or do we believe the Lions have become invincible? Come on. They’re the Lions. Their 2-0 record was compiled against a discombobulated Buccaneers squad (that unfortunately finally got their act together in the second half vs the Vikes) and a completely disintegrating Chiefs team that was clearly shell-shocked after Jamaal Charles’ injury. The Vikings can and will run the ball vs. Detroit’s defense, and if the Vikes get to Matthew Stafford, he will make dumb mistakes. Kevin Williams is back today which should help the pass rush and take a little pressure off the secondary (which is close to a disaster at this point). The key to the whole thing is Donovan McNabb. He has to be more accurate with all his throws, not just the deep stuff. Needless to say, the Vikes need to remain consistent for the entire game – no more second half let-downs. Here is some advice for the coaching staff in the form of bullets:
- Leave Jamarca Sanford in the game. I think they expected the Bucs to throw coming out of halftime last week, hence their decision to put in Tyrell Johnson. But the Bucs ran and with Sanford on the sidelines Tampa’s run game was more effective. Sanford has shown he can come up and put a stick on a ball carrier. Is he really that much of a liability against the pass?
- Throw more in the first half. The Vikings actually threw a lot on first down last week and I think they need to throw more. Replace a few running plays with quick shots to Percy Harvin and screens to Toby Gerhart. Speaking of Harvin…
- Try at least one deep pass to Percy. What can it hurt? Maybe he’ll even catch it. If McNabb doesn’t overthrow him by five yards.
- McNabb on bootlegs. That’s been working well. Let’s see more.
- Blitz Stafford. I’m not convinced this guy is suddenly Tom Brady. Bring the heat against him like you did against Vick last year and see how he handles it.
It always sounds easy when you lay it out in the form of bullet points. I’m picking the Vikings to win this game 24-21. Late field goal by Ryan Longwell for the victory.