Linval Joseph – DT
Linval Joseph has been a beast for the Vikings already this season. In the first two weeks, he’s already amassed 10 tackles, two sacks, and loads of interior pressure. The Vikings will need him at his run-stuffing best against the Raiders.
The Raiders run game is the strongest part of their offensive attack. They used one of their three first-round picks on Alabama’s Josh Jacobs and he has not disappointed. He’s already rushed for 184 yards with two scores. He’s a powerful runner with great vision and top-end speed. The Raiders offense will go through Jacobs on Sunday even though he’s dinged up and been sick this week.
Linval is going to need to plug up the interior so there is no room for the Raiders to run. If he’s successful they’ll be forced to bounce everything outside where Eric Wilson and Anthony Barr and a host of other Vikings will be waiting to make the tackle. If Joseph can shut down the run, the Raiders will become one-dimensional. Mike Zimmer can then unleash the dogs and Danielle Hunter and Everson Griffen could go on to have big games.