Aug 16, 2013; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Minnesota Vikings linebacker Desmond Bishop (59) on the sideline during the game against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bills beat the Vikings 20-16. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

What's Going On With Desmond Bishop?

One of the biggest questions marks entering the season for the Minnesota Vikings was the linebacker position.  The Vikings were aggressive in getting bodies to compete for jobs there, drafting Gerald Hodges and Michael Mauti as well as getting Desmond Bishop out of free agency.

Aug 25, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Lavelle Hawkins (4) is called for unsportsmanlike conduct against Minnesota Vikings linebacker Desmond Bishop (59) after making a catch during the fourth quarter at Candlestick Park. The San Francisco 49ers defeated the Minnesota Vikings 34-14. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

If you’re not familiar with Desmond Bishop, he is a former Green Bay Packers player who was a part of the team when they won Super Bowl XLV.  Bishop recovered a fumble in that game at a crucial point in the game that helped the Packers finish the game with a win.  In the preseason that followed, he suffered a devastating injury to his hamstring which caused him to miss the entire season after surgery.  When the Vikings decided to take a risk on Bishop with a one year contract, most fans assumed that he would either compete for the starting middle linebacker job or the outside linebacker job.

Week 1 of the NFL season has passed, and we have yet to see Bishop.  It was stated that it was “coach’s decision” that Bishop didn’t play.  Strangely enough Bishop had tweeted some cryptic messages that really makes you wonder what is going on.  Bishop said that it would take luck and prayer for him to him to crack the lineup.  When asked to explain, he stated that he doesn’t know how to explain it.

From the outside looking in, it leaves things very open to interpretation.  Even though Bishop looked really good during the preseason, it makes you wonder if it’s a problem with his health, the scheme or even something else that is keeping him off the field.  Against the Lions in week 1, the Vikings played a lot of nickel defense where a linebacker was replaced by another defensive back.  Perhaps when the scheme makes it necessary, Bishop will become a more valuable asset to this team. This is what Bishop had to say about waiting for his chance to play:

Jan 15, 2012; Green Bay, WI, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) throws a pass under pressure from Green Bay Packers linebacker Desmond Bishop (55) during the NFC Divisional Playoff game at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

“My first three years in the league I felt the same way, I was ready and I had to be patient for three years. So, I kind of got the hang of it now. It’s definitely a little tough because I’m a competitor and I feel like I can help the team. That’s not really my call, so I’m just waiting for my opportunity.”

When Desmond Bishop finally does get his opportunity, he should be able to make the most of it.  This preseason, he showed the speed and ability that would be needed to succeed in the Vikings defense.  For now, it’s just a matter of waiting to see when that opportunity will be.

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Tags: Desmond Bishop Gerald Hodges Michael Mauti Minnesota Vikings

  • Wayne Davis

    I think he should be on the field !… It’s understandable if its a scheme thing but I’d hope that the team would want the best player avail on the field

    • Daniel Laxen

      I get that too, but we’ve already seen with this coaching staff the way things operate…Please reconsider starting Ponder and Erin Henderson…SMFH

  • Daniel Laxen

    He’s a liability in coverage and everyone knows that. The Packers were more of a blitz happy team and scheme. He’s great vs. the run and blitz package, but that pretty much tells everyone in the stadium what the defense intends to do, so Henderson gets the nod because he will be in position more than Bishop will. Simple as that! You can’t freelance in a cover 2 Bishop will more than Erin, even though that was a big question coming into this year.

    • Dennis

      “Simple as that?” Why do people keep saying that, and where the hell do you guys get that from? In 2011, he locked up every tightend he went against. EVERY single one. People keep repeating what they hear from other people, but that doesn’t make it true. Where (in what game, on actual FILM) has he proven to be a liability in coverage? Not just what you heard, but something that actually happened?

      • Daniel Laxen

        Because it’s true. Did you ever watch him try to cover RBs out of the backfield? He also had trouble with any TE with size and range, like the 2 in Detroit. Pettigrew lit his ass up a couple years ago. If he was that great at pass defense he’d have more than 1 career INT. By the way he only has 10 passes defended his entire career. Oh, they must not be passing his way, you say? A look at his stats would tell you that he was a blitz specialist in that 3-4 defense up in Green Bay. Look at his sack numbers!(see Dom Capers) In the Vikings scheme that would tip what the Vikings are planning to do…Until he’s up to snuff in the cover 2, he’s a liability in coverage for a team that doesn’t blitz all that much!

    • Wayne Davis

      I actually ment Mitchell he should starting over him on the outside … Have you seen Mitchell’s stats omg!!… He has at least two games 0!! Goose egg tackles!! How do you do that!! Bishop in spot had 1 tackle in the Pitt game Mitchell 0

      • Daniel Laxen

        You realize the Vikings are in Nickel a good portion of the time. When that happens Mitchell comes off for a CB? I believe that Bishop is the best option at MLB. Until he is more disciplined in the cover 2 he will be behind Henderson, but his stock is rising. He makes more plays than Mitchell at the wil…As odd as it seems these coaches do know what they are doing, sometimes they are staked to a player…See Christian Ponder.