Vikings 60-second rant: Defense exposed Sunday night

Posted Oct. 18, 2011 @ 6:57 p.m.
Posted By Christian West

I hope I'm not breaking any news here, but there is more to the Vikings than what is currently happening at quarterback.

With that out of the way, this is a good time to address a forgotten problem from the Vikings' blowout defeat to the Bears: the defense.

This is a unit that had been playing well throughout the season and was the subject of last week's rant. However, it had a complete breakdown on the Sunday-night stage.

Credit has to be given to Mike Martz and the Bears' game plan, as the Vikings looked completely unprepared to deal with max-protection schemes and a passing game looking to get more yards down the field.

On the defensive line, Kevin Williams was neutralized on the interior while stalwarts Jared Allen and Brian Robison dealt with constant chips and double-teams. When they did get one-on-one matchups, they were unable to win them. Bears OLT J'Marcus Webb, who had struggled throughout the season, handled Allen well.

In the secondary, there were numerous problems. Receivers ran with too much space down the field, and they were able to exploit the middle of the field for numerous big plays. Cedric Griffin was the weakest link on Sunday, as the Bears targeted him when he was in man coverage and created positive plays out of it. He, along with S Husain Abdullah, were beat on the 48-yard touchdown pass to Devin Hester. Tackling by the entire defense was also an issue.

I said last week that I felt the defense was solid enough to keep the team in games if the offense played respectably. After Sunday night's performance, that isn't the case. The Bears created a blueprint for attacking the Vikings' defense: If you can take away the pass rush using max protection, you can attack the secondary down the field. The defense now needs to go back to the drawing board and figure out a way to counter this and fast. Aaron Rodgers is coming to town.