Posts tagged with: Antoine Winfield

Vikings corners think they’re among the best

Yahoo sports posted a story today about how the Vikings corners believe they are among the best tandems in the league.  Click HERE to read that story.  (It’s a short one)

Antoine Winfield and Cedric Griffin are the starting corners for the Vikes this year.  They have some confidence.  That is a good thing for defenders to have.

I have to say I share that confidence.

The Vikings passing defense had looked bad for years, but was it ever really the fault of players like Winfield?  I really don’t think so.  No corner in the league can cover a wide receiver for 8, 9, 10 seconds, and before this past year, that’s what the Vikings DBs were often asked to do.  The Vikings were consistently putting talented guys in their backfield, but even though their D-line was amazing against the run, it produced no pass rush at all.

Of course last year, the appearance of Jared Allen on the Vikings scene changed all that.  Allen not only had 14.5 sacks (and who knows how many hurries and knock downs), his mere presence on the line allowed guys like Kevin Williams, Ray Edwards, and Brian Robison to spend more time in the opposing team’s backfield.  The Vikings also seemed a little more willing to blitz this year as well, which also helped to pressure the other team’s QB.

The combination of the added pressure and the fact that the Vikes really do have talent in their defensive backfield meant that the Vikings skyrocketed up the stats list when it comes to pass defense.

And I really don’t see any reason it should be any different this year.


Winfield signs an extention

Read the article HERE

Antoine Winfield signed an extention with the Vikings today, which is one of the major things that were looming over the team this off season.

I think this is GREAT news. Winfield was a monster on the field last year, and I’m glad to see the Vikings wrap him up for a while.

Last year’s addition of Jared Allen really helped the Vikings pass defense by putting some pressure on opposing QBs. Winfield’s incredible play, though, was also a part of that improvement. I really think that having EJ Henderson for more than 3 1/2 games this year will make the defense improve yet again.


A break from Favre news: Winfield’s contract negotiations have stalled.

The Star Tribune is reporting that talks of extending cornerback Antoine Winfield’s contract have stalled without reaching an agreement. No further talks are scheduled at this time.

Winfield

This doesn’t necessarily mean that Winfield is gone after this year. The same thing happened to Pat Williams a couple years back, and talks resumed during training camp, and Pat was signed to an extension.

I think the Vikings need to make sure they have Winfield wrapped up for a few years. His playmaking last year was monstrous, and he is the reason that we won a couple of the games that we did.

Source: STAR TRIBUNE


The Vikings shine as the NFC wins the Pro Bowl 30 – 21

Yesterday’s season-ending Pro Bowl is now in the books, and the NFC won 30 – 21.

The MVP of the game (and rightfully so) was Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals.  Fitzgerald capped off his amazing post season with 5 catches for 81 yards and 2 touchdowns.  Fitz proved once again that it doesn’t matter who is covering him… if the QB puts the ball where he can get it, he’ll get it.

The Vikings looked good throughout the game.  Offensive lineman Steve Hutchinson played nearly the entire game, Kevin Williams and Antoine Winfield both had 4 tackles, and Pat Williams and Jared Allen each had 3.  Allen had a sack, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery (all in one play!).  Winfield had an interception.  Adrian Peterson rushed 8 times for 48 yards and a TD.

The Vikings really shined in short burst in the third quarter.  AFC QB Kerry Collins tried to go deep to Brandon Marshall of the Broncos, but the pass was picked off by Antoine Winfield.  Several plays (and a punt) later, the AFC has the ball back.  Jared Allen gets to Collins and strips the ball, forcing a fumble and being credited with a sack.  Allen scooped the ball up and returned it to the AFC 10 yard line.  On the very next play, Peterson took the hand off from Manning and ran 10 yards for the TD.

The big difference for Peterson this year was that he only got 8 carries.  Last year he got 19 carries during the game, and before the game started, it sounded like NFC coach Any Reid was going to continue that trend.  This year the NFC only rushed 19 times total, though.

The Pro Bowl is never the most exciting game to watch in my mind, but it does mark the official end of the football season.  It’s a little sad that we will have to wait 6 months to see the Vikings on the field again, but hopefully there will be plenty going on with roster moves to keep us all excited.


Vikings in this Sunday’s Pro Bowl

The Minnesota Vikings have 6 players in this Sunday’s Pro Bowl, so I thought we could take a look at them today. We’ll start with the offense

OFFENSIVE PRO BOWLERS

Adrian Peterson (Starter)
Of course this one is kind of a given. Peterson led the NFL with 1,760 rushing yards this year, and there probably isn’t any other running back in the league that is feared by defenses like he is. He was last year’s Pro Bowl MVP, putting up the second most rushing yards in the history of the Pro Bowl itself. Any Reid asked him how many carries he wants this year, and Adrian answered “You can give me the ball every time”.

Steve Hutchinson (Starter)
Hutch is one of the best linemen in the game, so this doesn’t come as a surprise. He was a solid part of the left side of the line for the Vikings all year.

DEFENSIVE PRO BOWLERS

Kevin Williams (Starter)
One half of the Williams Wall, Kevin has been a pro bowler before, but he certainly benefited from having newcomer Jared Allen on the line with him this year. His sack total went from 3 last year to 8.5 this year, proving that he’s still just as dangerous on passing downs as he is in stopping the run.

Antoine Winfield (Starter)
Winfield will be playing in his first Pro Bowl ever this year. I used to complain a lot about Winfield. I always thought he was a solid tackler, but I felt he got beat a lot on plays that he should’ve been able to break up. This year he changed my mind. He only had 2 interceptions on the year, but he consistently made big plays at key times, including a couple defensive touchdowns.
Pat Williams
Big Pat will be joining fellow linemen Kevin Williams and Jared Allen in this year’s Pro Bowl. Even though only Kevin Williams is starting, I wouldn’t be surprised to see some plays when the Minnesota Vikings make up 75% of the defensive line in the game. Pat is an amazing run stopper, and his value was proven when he missed a few games at the end of the season this year.
Jared Allen
Allen is another obvious choice for the Pro Bowl. He had 14.5 sacks this season, and he lead the league with 2 safeties on the season as well. My only gripe though is that he should be a starter. He had more sacks then starter Justin Tuck, and the same number of sacks and more tackles than starter Julius Peppers. I have a feeling that he’ll make the most of his playing time, though. I’m going to predict that he finishes the game with 2 sacks.