Minnesota Vikings: MNF Meltdown, Plan of Action Going Forward

Oct 31, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer watches his team play against the Chicago Bears during the first half at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 31, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer watches his team play against the Chicago Bears during the first half at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports /

After last night’s horrible play, what can the Minnesota Vikings do to get back on the path they were on two weeks ago?

Last night was not fun if you are a Minnesota Vikings fan. The team played bad on all phases of the game. That is something we have not seen this year. Even their top notch defense was not clicking.

Coming into the game, most expected the Vikings to get back on track after a loss in Philadelphia. That was not the case on Halloween night.

The Vikings have endured a lot of injuries so far this season, but most important of all, they might not be able to overcome their losses along the offensive line.

The offensive line play has been so bad, it has made the run game non existent. With no holes for running backs to run through, and no hall of fame running backs in the backfield, the Vikings are currently the worst rushing team in the league. We Miss You AP!

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With bad play in pass protection, Bradford has almost no time to let the receiver’s routes develop. With his injury history, something has to change up front to keep him upright.

Bradford seems rattled. In the few instances that he has time to throw the ball, his passes have been off target.

It is known that Bradford is not mobile in any sense, but if you give him time he can be accurate.

TJ Clemmings has been the worst rated tackle, according to PFF’s rating system, not just this season, but over the last decade. We Miss You Matt Kalil!(Never thought I would say this)

If they are not on the phones today trying to make a move for offensive line help, then I do not know what is going on. Yes, the Vikings cap space is less than $1M right now, but making some moves and restructuring some contracts could be done to make room.

The defense, uncharacteristically played bad.

This is something we have not seen this season. Especially in the run game. Giving up a 69 yard run, caused by multiple missed tackles and bad angles, with another 43 yard run later, is inexcusable.

Xavier Rhodes had two interceptions go right off his hands, with both of those drives resulting in scores for the Bears.

The Vikings defensive line, which had been a terror, was not so spooky on Halloween night. They forced one sack, although it was late in the third. It should be noted that it seemed as if the referees were blind to holding calls last night. I mean, blatant holds.

Facing two backup guards, and a rookie running back, should have been an easy task for this line. It did not end up that way.

The safety spot opposite Harrison Smith was filled by Anthony Harris, and some snaps by rookie Jayron Kearse. This was definitely a weak spot in the defense. We Miss You Andrew Sendejo!

Even the coaching was bad.

Using challenges on plays that were obviously something that would not have enough evidence to be overturned, made the Vikings look desperate.

The offense played with no sense of urgency in the second half. With time ticking off the clock, by the time the offense could get a decent drive together, and put a ball in the endzone, it was too late.

Going forward, there needs to be some serious changes made in order to help us succeed.

The offense needs to change, from the style that Norv Turner normally likes to run.

The scheme needs to become a short to intermediate passing game, to accommodate for the bad line play. Using seam routes, drag routes, short slants, and bubble screens to get the ball out quick and trust receivers like Diggs and Patterson to make plays with the ball in their hands.

Rudolph has excelled in play calling like this as a big body possession tight end. Rookie Laquon Treadwell is known for excelling at these kind of routes throughout college.

Adding a tight end to help blocking in pass protection is needed.

Speeding up the offense has worked with Bradford before.

Running back Adrian Peterson is said to be far ahead of schedule in his recovery process and is shooting for an early December return. Adding Peterson in the backfield will force opposing defenses to respect the run game and most will stack the box.

As we have for most of his career, having Peterson in the backfield will open things up for receivers and then the deeper routes can be utilized. We will have to adapt until then.

Overall, it was a shocker to most that we would lose to the Bears, but Vikings fans know our record playing in Soldier Field and on Monday Night Football. It was a recipe for disaster from the beginning.

Next: Vikings: Time to Panic?

Let us hope that the coaching staff can make the right changes and the team takes these losses as motivation to get ready for the Lions at home.