Maybe you’ve been too caught up in watching Kareem Hunt and Tyreek Hill make spectacular play after spectacular play, and rightfully so, because the Kansas City Chiefs are that good. However, you’ve probably also been sleeping on the Minnesota Vikings. Don’t do that! It’s time to pay attention and give this squad some overdue credit.
The offensive combination of wide receiver Stefon Diggs and running back Dalvin Cook for the Vikings is beastly, to say the least. Throw in Adam Thielen, Kyle Rudolph and Laquon Treadwell and we’re talking about a pick your poison offense. If Michael Floyd returns with his head on straight and his hands a bit softer than they were in Arizona, then the depth of this team could get even scarier. The other beauty of this offense is that it’s quarterback agnostic, as Case Keenum proved on Sunday by leading the Vikings to a 34-17 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
While the Vikings defense hasn’t fully locked down any opponent just yet, this is an admirable unit that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Xavier Rhodes is a top cornerback and proved so on Sunday by quieting wide receiver Mike Evans. Collectively, Rhodes and his battery mates are a sneaky bunch that should only get better in the coming weeks.
Perhaps the weakest link on this team is at the quarterback position. No, we’re not saying that Sam Bradford isn’t any good. What we are saying is that Bradford, like Teddy Bridgewater, is simply too fragile to go the distance. Bradford (again, like Bridgewater) has skinny legs and is unable to take the hits of some of the thicker-bodied gunslingers in the league. For all intents and purposes, this team will need a sturdy quarterback under center to go the distance to compete with the likes of division rivals, Aaron Rodgers and Matthew Stafford. In comparison to Bradford, those two are iron men.
Vikings backup QB, Case Keenum, showed us something delightful this past Sunday versus the Bucs. He proved that this offense is capable of operating with any abled arm that knows the playbook, and that’s no knock on Keenum. That said, the Vikings can essentially play Bradford, Bridgewater and Keenum in a quarterback-by-committee setup and make this thing work. Of course, this is not how it will play out, but it’s a possibility given that Bradford’s not right and Bridgewater is on his way back soon. It’ll be quite interesting to see how the coaches play this thing out.
Back to Stefon Diggs for a minute. This dude is electric! He’s essentially Antonio Brown-lite right now. Of the mid-size receivers, he’s sandwiched in-between Antonio Brown and Odell Beckham Jr. at this point. Not in size, but in skill. That’s right, we’re putting him above OBJ! It’s early in the year, but Diggs already has 293-yards and four touchdowns on 17-receptions (and there’s no reason to think that this can’t continue). With Diggs on the field playing out of his mind, he also keeps defenses honest so that both Dalvin Cook and Adam Thielen can run wild.
Whether it be in real life or fantasy football, don’t sleep on the Minnesota Vikings or the pieces that make up this team. It’s hard to say where the Vikings will place at the end of the season, but with what we’ve seen so far, it’s easy to see that they’re the real deal.