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Tuesday, January 23, 2018

How the Vikings built the NFL's No. 1 defense (ESPN)

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This topic contains 1 reply, has 2 voices, and was last updated by shoeless6 Joe Oberle 4 days, 11 hours ago.

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  • #19132

    Read it: http://www.espn.com/blog/nflnation/post/_/id/266226/how-the-vikings-built-the-nfls-no-1-defense

    EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Mike Zimmer waited 35 years to get an NFL head-coaching job. The benefit of those preceding decades? When the Minnesota Vikings hired him in 2014, Zimmer knew the specific athletic profile he needed at each position to build a group that would cement his legacy as a defensive savant.

    Four seasons later, the Vikings have the NFL’s top defense — whether you measure by scoring (15.8 points allowed per game), yards (275.9 per game) or third-down percentage (25.2). No Minnesota defense has accomplished that feat since 1970, and it can be attributed in large part to a roster that includes two All-Pros and two players who made the Pro Bowl.

    “Without giving away all my secrets,” Zimmer said, “I like a certain body type with guys. You can kind of look at most of them and tell what we’re trying to get: Athleticism, guys who can think quickly on their feet, safeties that have versatility, corners who can cover.”

  • #19251
    Joe Oberle

    Zimmer also likes guys with attitudes who aren’t disruptive to the team as a whole and who really eat, sleep and shoot football. You can’t pass on super talent out of fear of disruption, but it certainly informs his decisions, IMO.

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