Vikings on the run again, and it works

AP

The Vikings made a bold move to change their offensive direction last week, and the results were clear.

They’re once again a running-and-defense team, and once again it works.

They beat the Dolphins 41-17, thanks to a new balance to their offense and a defense capable of smothering.

Coach Mike Zimmer fired offensive coordinator John DeFilippo last week, as the two clearly weren’t on the same page. The Vikings were running just 33 percent of the time after 13 games, which clearly wasn’t where Zimmer wanted to be. Sunday, they ran it 40 times and Kirk Cousins threw 21 times.

Dalvin Cook had 19 carries for 136 yards and two touchdowns and added another 27 yards receiving, putting him back in the feature role of the offense instead of the $84 million man. Latavius Murray added 68 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries as well as part of the new emphasis.

The win moves the Vikings to 7-6-1, and keeps them in position to claim the final wild card berth in the NFC.

And with the way they played, they have some degree of a chance. The Vikings defense sacked Ryan Tannehill nine times, and limited the Dolphins to 193 yards.

The Dolphins fell to 7-7 and a game behind the final playoff berth in the AFC. Other than a 75-yard touchdown run by Kalen Ballage (who came in the game after Frank Gore left with an ankle injury) and a pick-six by Minkah Fitzpatrick, there wasn’t a lot of pop for the Dolphins.

44 responses to “Vikings on the run again, and it works

  1. Zimmer’s got guts. He stated it perfectly. Not going to waste the rest of the season doing what they were doing. Hold people accountable and make the changes necessary. I’m Zimmer we trust.

  2. When our defense plays like they play when they play! thats when they’re unstoppable. we can do some damage in the playoffs, if we get there. Win at Detroit and you’re in.

  3. At points the offense looked great. The pick 6 was painful and the third quarter was largely without much offense. But overall this was a clear improvement and showed they can run the ball with some creativity as to when and how. Strong move dumping your OC Mr. Zimmerm. At least in the short window, it seems to be working. The defense was awesome as well.

  4. vavikingfan says:
    December 16, 2018 at 4:16 pm
    Cousin’s kept his turnover streak alive.
    ————-
    Cousins could be the Vikings biggest liability.
    17 turnovers this year.
    Zimmers plan…..keep it out of Cousins control.

  5. No offense intended to the Vikings, but of course Miami lost, they won their Super Bowl last week.

  6. I want to hear from all the naysayers about Cousins not being able to beat a team with a winning record entering the game.

    Glad Zimmer gave Flip the boot. Hindsight says it should have been done at least a few games ago.

    On to Detroit.

  7. gtodriver says:
    December 16, 2018 at 4:26 pm
    I want to hear from all the naysayers about Cousins not being able to beat a team with a winning record entering the game.

    Glad Zimmer gave Flip the boot. Hindsight says it should have been done at least a few games ago.

    On to Detroit.
    ————-
    Unfortunately that won’t stop.
    The Dolphins are now 7-7.

  8. Flip sucked. Plain and simple. Offense looked like they had rhythm today. Would like to see even more roll outs and hurry up. Defense dominated. Again. 14 points for Dolphins from defense and 1 offensive play.

  9. Dolphins beat the Patriots, people can’t stop talking about how the Vikings and Cousins won’t beat a winning team. Vikings thrash the Dolphins, people can’t stop saying the Dolphins are only a 7-7 team. Whatever. Vikings in the playoffs as of now (still). What about your team?

  10. SYZ says:

    The Dolphins are now 7-7.
    ###

    Which means they were 7 – 6 entering the game, which is a winning record, exactly as I posted.

  11. Trollful says:
    But but but all my fellow dolphin fans keep telling me how good Tannehill is even if he only produces 37 net passing yards in a game!
    —–

    The Dolphins’ receivers can’t get open, the offensive line can’t block (when they actually try to block, that is), the defense can’t conjure a pass rush, no one can tackle, they can’t stop runs up the middle, the defensive play calling is horrible and the coaches can’t prepare for road games, but you keep focusing on Tannehill. Because once the team replaces the quarterback, the rest still will not have changed.

  12. And today’s winner in the Mediocre Sweepstakes, the Minnesota Vikings.

    They might have a chance next week against a team that couldn’t qualify for Mediocre.

    SKO … OOOOOO …L

  13. Pretty well-balanced team win in all phases — was nice to sit in the stands in the 4th quarter without a worry in the world. However, given the Dolphins lousy defense, I’m not sure we nominate Sefanski for offensive coach of the year quite yet.

  14. Truthful was nowhere to be seen on these boards the past few weeks. He only shows up when THill has a sub par game.

    Vikings defense is legit. As bad as THill played this week, he played better than Wilson played against this defense last week And Wilson is an MVP candidate.

  15. Hmmm … a great (although lucky) win over the Patriots last week. And then, guess what, they completely tank against the Vikings. They will always be known as the “forever-500” Dolphins.

  16. As a long time fin fan its time to cut Mr.Ross as long as he is the majority owner the fins will always be below average. The fins always end up around .500 and half of those wins are from luck. I remember when teams feared the mighty dolphins but lately the are a joke . Keep the circus going Mr. Ross you loser.. keep my fins at the bottom by changing coaches every 2 to 3 years and a QB that should have been out of the league years ago.. I love walking around in my fin gear and having people mock me thanks for that you pathetic excuse for an owner. You stuck and so does my team…

  17. That was a bad game for Miami. The lines just disappeared. Tannehill didn’t even get 2 seconds on the slo-mo replays and you could drive a truck through the lanes they had on defense.

  18. coltluger
    Dec 16, 2018, 6:22 PM EST
    Zimmer may have saved his job.
    Xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Huh? What?

  19. coltluger
    Dec 16, 2018, 6:38 PM EST
    Nine sacks. Tannehill is going to be sore.
    Xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Much better analysis

  20. gtodriver says:
    December 16, 2018 at 4:26 pm
    I want to hear from all the naysayers about Cousins not being able to beat a team with a winning record entering the game.
    =========================================================================================
    Wow. Cousins wasn’t the reason the Vikings won. He was merely average against a team with the 25th overall defense and 26 rated pass defense in the league. He threw a pick six that was awful. The Vikings beat a team with a hobbled QB and without their best RB and several injuries at key positions. Last week was the end of the world. This week, everything is fixed. Back on the bandwagon, die-hards.

  21. 37 responses to “Vikings on the run again, and it works”
    Alan Light says:
    December 16, 2018 at 4:08 pm
    World Class…way to take charge, Zim.
    ========================================================================================
    “World Class” of course, is a designation saved for organizations that provides a benchmark for excellence and are at the top of their field consistently. A second place finisher in a division with a 7-6-1 record and an abundance of talent and resources that underachieves is hardly a benchmark for the industry. Nor is one that can’t properly evaluate and hire managerial talent (see Zimmer’s hiring, and subsequent firing, of DeFilippo)

  22. frank booth says:

    Wow. Cousins wasn’t the reason the Vikings won.
    ###

    No, not all.

    That 40 yard laser to Richardson that put the game out of reach for the Dolphins was thrown by someone else…

  23. frank booth says:
    December 16, 2018 at 9:05 pm

    gtodriver says:
    December 16, 2018 at 4:26 pm
    I want to hear from all the naysayers about Cousins not being able to beat a team with a winning record entering the game.
    =========================================================================================
    Wow. Cousins wasn’t the reason the Vikings won. He was merely average against a team with the 25th overall defense and 26 rated pass defense in the league. He threw a pick six that was awful. The Vikings beat a team with a hobbled QB and without their best RB and several injuries at key positions. Last week was the end of the world. This week, everything is fixed. Back on the bandwagon, die-hards.
    ___________

    If it’s Cousins’ fault that his teams lose even when the offense puts up 30+ points (e.g., Rams game), then he should get credit when the team wins even when he doesn’t have his best game.

  24. Teams win games. Cousins was adequate, but his pick-6 was awful. The Vikings won primarily because of their run game and, outside of the Ballage touchdown run early in the second half, strong defense.

  25. usdcoyotesfan says:
    December 17, 2018 at 2:53 pm
    The Vikings didn’t beat the Dolphins, the Dolphins beat themselves

    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    Yet another year, no playoffs. What is pack fan going to do

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