Mike Zimmer: Gerald Hodges gives Vikings a ‘thumper’


Mike Zimmer played coy about his starting middle linebacker last week, telling the media he didn’t want to tip off the 49ers as to his lineup.

With game time approaching, Zimmer has dropped the veil of secrecy and revealed that Gerald Hodges will be the starting Mike for the Vikings when game time rolls around at 9:20 CT tonight.

Not exactly a shock given that Audie Cole already let this cat out of the bag to the media last week.

Zimmer explained to KFAN’s Dan Barreiro why he chose to go with Hodges at the Mike over Cole and rookie Eric Kendricks.

Zimmer referred to Hodges as a “thumper” as in a guy who thumps.

More from Minnesota Vikings News

Hodges is the first genuine “thumper” the Vikings have had at the Mike since E.J. Henderson roamed the field in the latter part of the previous decade.

You certainly wouldn’t call Erin Henderson or Jasper Brinkley a thumper.

Hodges athleticism should theoretically result in some higher impact plays, turnovers and tackles for loss and the like. The Vikings haven’t gotten enough of those over recent years from their linebackers.

And what of Eric Kendricks? It’s expected that the rookie 2nd rounder will get some action in nickel.

Someday we may even get to see the trio of Hodges, Kendricks and Anthony Barr together in the base defense. But that day will have to be put off as long as Chad Greenway remains in the lineup.

Next: Vikings v. 49ers: Five players to watch

More from The Viking Age