Vikings defensive line will shut down the Lions’ rushing attack
This might be an optimistic prediction considering the Vikings got gashed by Seattle for 218 yards rushing on Monday night, but the combination of a return to health, the scheme and the opponent should help Mike Zimmer’s defense look more stout than they did against Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny.
For starters, the Lions do not possess the same personnel that the Seahawks do in their backfield. Kerryon Johnson began the season as the starter but was sent to the IR right after the Lions lost to the Vikings in Week 7. Ever since, Detroit has been scrambling to find a running back to replace Johnson, who wasn’t all that effective before going down with just 3.3 yards per carry.
As of now, the Lions seem to have settled on a combination of Bo Scarbrough (53 carries, 236 yards, TD in three games) and J.D. McKissick (27 rec., 206 yards, TD). While Scarbrough has been solid for the Lions, he may run into his toughest task against the Vikings.
Against Seattle, the Minnesota Vikings played more with two safeties back in order to defend the pass and keep Russell Wilson in check. With Wilson throwing for just 240 yards, the approach worked, but Seattle took advantage by pounding the rock. On Sunday, the secondary will have to deal with David Blough, who had an admirable first game but isn’t worthy of being a focal point.
With Linval Joseph and Shamar Stephen potentially returning to the lineup, the Vikings may have a chance to use this strategy a little better in order to shut down Marvin Jones and Kenny Golladay. All that will determine if Minnesota can rebound in run defense, but that might not be their only concern.