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Vikings-Chargers: 10 observations

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Skuzzlebutt, Sep 7, 2011.

  1. Skuzzlebutt

    Skuzzlebutt BoltTalker

    Jan 10, 2007

    Vikings-Chargers: 10 observations [​IMG] [​IMG]

    By Doug Kretz
    Scouts Inc.

    Minnesota at San Diego
    When: 4:15 PM ET
    Watch: FOX
    More scouting reports: Week 1

    Scouts Inc. Position Advantage
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    After breaking down film of both teams, Scouts Inc. offers 10 things to watch in this week's Vikings-Chargers matchup.

    1. Minnesota needs to run the ball effectively: With a new quarterback under center and a relatively short training camp for QB Donovan McNabb to get used to the offense and his receiving corps, it is imperative that running backs Adrian Peterson and Toby Gerhart get positive yards on first and second down. McNabb is getting on in years and lacks the foot speed and quickness to extend the pocket and make plays with his feet like he used to, so he needs a solid ground game to slow down the pass rush.
    2. Expect the Vikings to use a lot of double-tight end formations: Minnesota needs to use its tight ends to not only give it more blocking strength, but to also keep San Diego's safeties honest in the middle when throwing the ball. The Vikings should have a good height advantage when throwing to their tight ends against coverage by the Chargers' safeties and by lining up two tight ends for a good portion of the game, it makes them less predictable.
    3. Minnesota will use a lot of max coverage: Minnesota defensive coordinator Fred Pagac is not a big blitzer to start with, and with his front four he should be able to get good pressure without having to blitz his safeties or linebackers very often. San Diego QB Philip Rivers has become one of the better quarterbacks when it comes to recognizing the blitz and going to his hot reads, which can often make a defense pay for the gamble. The Vikings need to flood the zones with as many defenders as possible to limit the number of throwing lanes available to Rivers.
    4. Win on special teams: San Diego no longer has Darren Sproles back to return kickoffs or punts while the Vikings have one of the more electric kickoff return specialists in Percy Harvin. If the Vikings manage to get a big return, it will not only provide key field position, but will help to quiet the hometown crowd of the Chargers.
    5. Matchup to watch: Minnesota RB Adrian Peterson vs. San Diego ILB Takeo Spikes: Peterson is the straw that stirs the Vikings' offense. He is a workhorse back who can make a missed tackle turn into a long touchdown run, as well as move the chains with tough power running between the tackles. Spikes is a tackling machine that the Chargers signed away from the San Francisco 49rs in the offseason and should be extremely busy in this game.
    6. San Diego needs to spread the wealth: Rivers has become one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL when it comes to taking whatever the defense gives up. He can throw to multiple wide receivers, as well as one of the better corps of tight ends and quality receivers. In 2010, he had 10 players with 20 or more receptions.
    7. The Chargers need to come out quickly: San Diego has developed a reputation as a team that starts the season slowly and has to scramble to make the playoffs. The Chargers need to come out with a lot of fire and focus as they try to start the 2011 season with a win.
    8. Be physical in coverage: New defensive coordinator Greg Manusky loves an aggressive scheme and will ask his secondary to force the issue both on run support as well as when in coverage. Look for cornerbacks Quentin Jammer and Antoine Cason to use their size and strength to jam receivers as they try to get off the line as well as to re-route receivers after the fact.
    9. Look for the Chargers to crowd the box: San Diego wants to contain the Vikings' potent ground game before it has a chance to get untracked. Look for the strong safety to spend a lot of time near the line of scrimmage as Manusky packs the defense with eight defenders on obvious running downs. The last thing San Diego can afford is for Minnesota to control the clock and move the chains with a strong, effective running attack.
    10. Matchup to watch: San Diego LT Marcus McNeill vs. Minnesota RDE Jared Allen: McNeill and Allen have seen their share of Pro Bowl appearances, and this matchup promises to be a barn burner. McNeill is an excellent combination of pure power and athleticism, while Allen is a non-stop machine that can be relentless when it comes to rushing the passer.

    [​IMG] Minnesota 17
    San Diego 24
  2. Helmutt

    Helmutt BoltTalker

    Oct 15, 2006
    I think that #7 is the key. If the Bolts can come out fired up. make a few defensive stops and jump out to a quick lead, they can have more control over the tempo and possibly neutralize the running threat. If we start like we did against SF, it will be a long day.
  3. Nomadic Bolt Fan

    Nomadic Bolt Fan Well-Known Member

    Jul 21, 2006
    I hope Billy does well too... holding the clipboard. ;)
    • Like Like x 1
  4. boltssbbound

    boltssbbound Well-Known Member

    Jun 16, 2006
    I don't see the Vikings being able to get a lot of pressure from their front four. Kevin Williams is out and they lost Edwards in free agency. This means that the Chargers should be able to slide the pass protection to help against Jared Allen. If the Vikings choose to sit back and let Rivers pick apart their zone defense, they will be in for a long afternoon.
  5. Buck Melanoma

    Buck Melanoma Guest

    They have a couple of young guys who might draw attention from Allen. I'm more worried about getting off the field defensively.
  6. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Carpe Diem et omni Mundio Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

    Jan 19, 2006
    Robinson is a decent pass rusher but only average as a DE and the two defensive tackles I've never heard of. What concerns me about the Viking defense is Jared Allen, their fast LB corps (could make running very difficult) and their have three good cornerbacks. Good news is their DTs and their Safeties are horrible
  7. Holy_Bolt

    Holy_Bolt Well-Known Member

    Nov 18, 2007
    I could not agree more. It still pains me to remember AP's game in 2007. THE HORROR! That humbled many Charger players and also many of us fans. I'm still not convinced our run defense is good enough to stop a power runner like AP.
  8. Scott the Rock

    Scott the Rock BoltTalker

    Oct 19, 2008
    Yes but don't forget that AP has been known to fumble the ball....oh wait...so does our guy.
  9. LA Charger Fan 619

    LA Charger Fan 619 BoltTalker

    Sep 9, 2011
    Let's make sure to make sure that we note Mathews AND Tolbert in that category. Fumbles hurt.

    HEXEDBOLT Don't like it, lump it!!!

    Jul 11, 2006
    There is no reason a defense should play flat, clumsy or stupid ball. Kill drives early and often and give the ball back to the offense and good things will happen, a take a way for a score here and there never hurt none either.

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