Minnesota Vikings: Is Chad Greenway being eased out?


I absolutely love Minnesota Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway.  He’s a great man who does a lot of his community.  He has led the team in tackles many times.  He’s a hard-nosed player who is tough as nails.

But he has also been a liability at times.

It’s hard to admit that he has lost a step.  Injuries and age may be major factors in Greenway’s decline, but the Minnesota Vikings have been preparing for this.  They have used quite a few early draft picks on linebackers and have been developing some of their late round picks as well.  In fact, guys like Anthony Barr, Gerald Hodges, Eric Kendricks, and Audie Cole.

Nov 30, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway (52) celebrates breaking up a pass against the Carolina Panthers in the third quarter at TCF Bank Stadium. The Vikings won 31-13. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota Vikings fans who love Pro Football Focus have seen some of the absurdly low grades that Chad Greenway has received over the last few years.  The two previous seasons, he has recorded grades of -15.9 and -19.2. Those numbers don’t mean much to look at, but watching him on the field, you can tell that he’s lost a step.

The Minnesota Vikings reduced Greenway’s snaps during the game against the Detroit Lions.  While the reasoning for this decision is still unknown, the former Iowa linebacker only found himself playing for 16 snaps in Sunday’s contest.

Could this be just because the Vikings were playing the pass most of the game?  Or is this something that we’ll see more often when the team goes back to their base defense?

Right now, we don’t know.  But what we do know is that the result of the defense’s efforts against the Lions was MUCH better than that of the previous one against the 49ers, which was a game that had him on the field with a much larger role.

It’s hard to hate Chad Greenway for all the good that he does for his charity and how tough of a player he is, but the kids around him at linebacker have grown up.  It could be time for them to take over the starting jobs and leave Greenway as a relief player or thumper only.

What do you think?  Is this the phasing out of Chad Greenway for the Minnesota Vikings?  Or was he only sitting out because the team was in nickel defense for most of the game?  Let me know what you think in the comments below.

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