Week 1: Vikings’ LT Matt Kalil


Separating your sports website’s content from the millions of others is difficult. In order to separate ourselves, Sporting Sota is beginning a new weekly segment entitled, “Minnesota Sports: Bum of the Week”. Each week we will analyze every Minnesota athlete who performed, on and off the field, throughout the specified time frame and determine the player who had the worst week overall. Players will be judged week to week; a history of excellence will not be saving anyone.

Without further ado, allow me to introduce you to the Minnesota Sports Bum of the Week from the week beginning on Monday September 15th, 2014 and ending on Sunday September 21st, 2014: Minnesota Vikings Left Tackle Matt Kalil

Introduction: While Adrian Peterson is the easy choice here, given his indefinite suspension resulting from an indictment on child abuse related charges, I for one have had enough of this story. Peterson has received more than enough negative media attention; he does not need to win our high-profile award for weekly bum-ness as well. With Peterson out of the running, this decision became rather simple. Anyone who watched the Vikings’ week 3 matchup against the New Orleans Saints yesterday could notice the constant pressure quarterbacks Matt Cassel and Teddy Bridgewater were under throughout the game. While the entire Vikings offensive line played a role in this awful blocking performance, Kalil, was the definitive worst of the group.

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  • Why He is a Bum: If you are unwilling to believe your eyes, please allow the statistics to do the talking. According to Pro Football Focus, a website dedicated to assessing the performance of each and every NFL player, Kalil was responsible for five quarterback hurries, one quarterback hit and one quarterback sack. He received an overall score of -4.3, which is nearly double the -2.3 score RT Phil Loadholt received as the second lowest graded Viking offensive lineman in week 3. Kalil received a -4.2 passing blocking score and -1.3 run blocking score. If not for his +1.0 screen blocking score and +0.2 penalty score, Kalil’s overall score would have been even lower than it already was.

    Not a Bum Yet?: The Vikings offense, which included 18 players on Sunday, recorded a score of -12.4 overall. Kalil, who makes up slightly above .05-percent of the Vikings offense, was responsible for a hair under 35-percent of the team’s negative score. Loadholt, who recorded the second-lowest score among the offensive players receiving grades, was responsible for (only) 18.5-percent.

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  • Still Not a Bum?: Referring back to PFF for a deeper analysis, Kalil’s overall score of -4.3 ranks seventh worst in comparison with every other NFL offensive lineman who has played so far this week. It is the worst score recorded by any left tackle and the third worst score among offensive tackles recorded in week 3 of the NFL regular season.

    Kalil, who, as a left tackle, has the primary responsibility of protecting his quarterback’s blind side in pass protection, recorded the second worst pass blocking score of all offensive linemen and the worst of any offensive tackle this week. His pass blocking score of -4.2 is the third worst score given out this season, behind only his week 2 score of -5.1 and Green Bay Packers‘ RT Derek Sherrod‘s pass blocking score of -5.2 from week 1.

    Conclusion: Kalil, a former No. 4 overall draft selection, has been a problem all season for the Vikings. After performing at a pro bowl level as a rookie in 2012, Kalil has seen his production fall off dramatically. He has quickly become a player opposing defensive coordinators feel comfortable targeting as a weakness. If Kalil does not soon resolve his protection issues, he not only will be a weekly candidate for this award, but a candidate to warm the Vikings’ bench. Congratulations Matt, you are the first Minnesota athlete to be awarded Minnesota Sports: Bum of the Week.

    Other Bums Considered: Peterson and (former) Vikings WR Jerome Simpson