Here are 4 ways you can find out if the Vikings have successfully launched a page in the Zimmer era

Here are 4 ways you can find out if the Vikings have successfully launched a page in the Zimmer era

Kevin O’Connell

There was a rich stretch with former Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer, winning 56.2% of all games from 2014 to 2021, the 10th-best in the NFL in that period.

Kevin O’Connell is now in charge of much of the same roster.

While Zimmer has led the Vikings to the top 10 for eight seasons, there are few areas where Minnesota could have performed better.

In a nutshell, these are statistics to look at under O’Connell – and they’ll tell you if his leadership has changed Zimmer’s “old way”.

Defeating the team with a winning record

December 26, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Mike Zimmer, head coach of the Minnesota Vikings. Compulsory Credit: Jeffrey Baker – USA Today Sports

Of all the mistakes Zimmer made, this was the most frustrating.

The league’s 10th-best team was ranked 22nd in the winning percentage from 2014 to 2021 against teams with a winning record (and in context, that means the teams ended the season with a winning record).

In fact, the Zimmer Vikings are 17-40 (.298) against teams with an eight-season winning record.

Of course, this means that the Vikings beat the worst teams at a higher rate than the other good teams, but match-ups against the league’s heavy-hitters are important in the playoffs.

Zimmer beats the urine from the bad and medium squad but struggles against the good ones. It will be important to monitor O’Connell’s performance on this metric.

Late afternoon and win primetime games

December 20, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousin. Compulsory Credit: John Durr – USA Today Sports

Have you ever heard of the Vikings having fun playing lunch? It’s real.

Zimmer’s Vikings have performed in every timeslot since 2014-2021:

  • Noon CST = .618 (8th in the NFL)
  • Last afternoon = .375 (26th in the NFL)
  • Primetime = .481 (17th in the NFL)

This is a wonderful variety. Minnesota played like a gangbuster early on Sunday – and averaged or less at other times.

For better or worse, this metric will be tested in Weeks 1 and 2 as the Vikings will battle the Green Bay Packers and the Philadelphia Eagles in primetime afternoon, respectively.

Grass wins on the surface

November 28, 2021; Santa Clara, California, USA; Minnesota Vikings cornerback Patrick Peterson (7) tackled San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Debo Samuel. Kyle Terda-USA Today Sports

In Zimmer’s defense, it has long been a problem for the Vikings – not limited to his term.

Led by Zimmer, Minnesota was the league’s 10th-best overall team – but the 20th-best franchise on the grass. When you cringed hitting a road game on a rough surface, it was for good reason.

O’Connell will be tested in Week 2 in Philadelphia and 4 weeks in London with these somewhat obscure statistics.

OL pass protection in average or good position

Cork cousin / Garrett Bradberry
August 18, 2019; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings offensive lineman Garrett Bradberry (56) snaps to quarterback Kirk Cousins. Compulsory Credit: Brace Hemelgarn – USA Today Sports

For a specific area of ​​the team, this status is most detrimental to Zimmer.

Per Pro football focus, Here are the Vikings pass-protection rankings from 2014:

  • 2014 = 23rd
  • 2015 = 28th
  • 2016 = 30th
  • 2017 = 17th
  • 2018 = 27th
  • 2019 = 27th
  • 2020 = 29th
  • 2021 = 27th

You will notice that one year in Minnesota Trench 2017 was not terrifying. Imagine – the Vikings reached the NFC Championship that season.

There is a direct link in the NFL between good pass protection and the teams that reach the playoffs. Maybe, once and for all, the new offensive-minded coach will bring back the Vikings trench in honor.

Sometimes, one can look to the top 2018 to 2022 rankings for pass protection and wonder how cousins ​​around the world were healthy and still toss 30 touchdowns every season.

Cousins ​​have not experienced proper pass-blocking since the days of the Washington Commander.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to her daily YouTube channel, VikesNow. She Hosts a podcast With Bryant McKinney, which airs every Wednesday Raun Sai And Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking Fandom dates back to 1996. Listed Criminal Pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos’ and The Doors (Band).

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