Eric Nelson

SPORTS NUGGETS: Minnesota’s dominant D has similar qualities to Denver’s Super Bowl 50 team

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By Eric Nelson
January 4, 2018
GAMEDAY GOLD

 

MINNEAPOLIS – Sports Nuggets from the frigid north….

•Dominant D: The Minnesota Vikings defense is starting to resemble the Denver Broncos of two years ago. Like the Broncos, the Purple have ultra-talented players such as Anthony Barr, Everson Griffen, Harrison Smith and Xavier Rhodes. Winning the coveted Lombardi Trophy would elevate the Vikings defense to elite status – just like the Broncos were when they won Super Bowl 50 behind Von Miller, Demarcus Ware and Aqib Talib

•Orange Crush: The Broncos Super Bowl run was made possible because their defense played out of this galaxy. In the playoffs Denver shut down Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger and New England’s Tom Brady, and then bottled up Carolina’s Cam Newton on the super stage in Santa Clara. Minnesota has a chance to duplicate Denver’s success if the Viking defense continues to excel…

•200 Club: Minnesota WR Stefon Diggs had 6 catches for 65 yards and 1 touchdown last week against Chicago. Diggs now has 200 career catches and has reached that mark faster than any Viking in team history (40 games)…

•Randy Ratio: Former Vikings WR Randy Moss is one of 15 finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Moss was a super freak who had game changing abilities. He deserves a hall call…

•Scoreboard Salute: Jack Morris – who was recently voted into the Baseball HOF – received cheers after he was shown on the US Bank Stadium video board during the Bears-Vikings game…

•Drought-Busters: Buffalo is in the NFL postseason for the first time since 1999. The LA Rams are playoff-bound for the first time since 2004. Edmonton’s 11-year NHL playoff drought came to an end last spring. Is Minnesota’s NBA dry spell ready to end too? The Timberwolves have not been in the playoffs since 2004, but with a 24-15 record this season, there is a good chance they join the Bills, Rams and Oilers as a playoff team…

•Sub-Mariners: According to the Seattle Times, the Mariners now have the longest run of futility. Seattle has not qualified for the playoffs since 2001, when the Mariners won an MLB record 116 regular season games…

•Buffalo Stampede: With Buffalo in the playoffs, there is now a chance the Bills will play a Super Bowl in Minneapolis for a second time. Buffalo lost Super Bowl XXVI to Washington 37-24 at the Metrodome…

•Coincidental Losers: Cleveland is now the second team in NFL history to finish 0-16. The only other 0-16 team in league history was Detroit in 2008. According to the LA Times, the Browns and Lions both went 4-0 in the pre-season, only to lose every game that counted. This is more proof that exhibition games really are meaningless…

•Sony Shines: Just a hunch but I am guessing that Sony Michel won’t have to pay for any meals in Athens. Michel ran for 181 yards and three touchdowns in Georgia’s 54-48 double OT win over Oklahoma in the Rose Bowl. Michel’s sprinter speed was simply too much for the Sooners…

•Badger Ball: That was an impressive win for number 6 Wisconsin against 10th ranked Miami in the Orange Bowl on Saturday night. Sophomore QB Alex Hornibrook threw for 258 yards and four touchdown passes in the Badgers convincing 34-24 win. Wisconsin finished the season 13-1 and remains one of the nation’s top programs…

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