The Vikings will run for under 150 yards
Sunday’s game has all the makings of a big afternoon for the Vikings on the ground. The Chargers currently rank 32nd in rushing yards allowed and after seeing their defense stay on the field for 94 plays against the Baltimore Ravens, Minnesota figures to hold onto the ball and let their offense shorten the game.
If all of these things are in the Vikings’ favor, then why would we predict that they’ll have a bad day on the ground? It’s because the Vikings just aren’t that good at running the ball.
Heading into Week 9, Dalvin Cook is graded as Pro Football Focus’s 47th ranked running back. Although he ranks first with a 41.3 breakaway percentage (which is the percent of his carries that go for 20 or more yards), his running style has been more of a feast or famine, which has crippled the efficiency of the running game.
In addition, the Vikings’ offensive line hasn’t pulled their weight. PFF has the Vikings 19th in run blocking grade and with the struggles on the interior, running the ball isn’t as much of a strength as Mike Zimmer believes it is.