Scuffling Panthers draw red-hot Vikings defense

1 week ago 5
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Field Level Media
14 Oct 2021, 06:40 GMT+10

The Minnesota Vikings person travel to number connected their defence aboriginal successful the season.

That mightiness beryllium a connection to the Carolina Panthers to crank up the discourtesy a fewer notches erstwhile the teams collide Sunday day successful Charlotte, N.C.

The feel-good moments for the Panthers person vanished, peculiarly aft squandering a late-game pb successful past week's nonaccomplishment to Philadelphia.

Panthers backmost Sam Darnold has struggled the past 2 games and the Vikings (2-3) mightiness beryllium a pugnacious foe against whom to get backmost connected track. He has been sacked 8 times and thrown 5 interceptions successful Carolina's 2 losses.

"We've got to manager it better, play better," Panthers manager Matt Rhule said, noting shortcomings on the violative line. "We person to bash a amended occupation of protecting Sam."

Minnesota's defence has fixed up conscionable 1 passing touchdown implicit the past 3 games combined.

The Panthers (3-2) began the play with a three-game winning streak, but determination were fewer signs of that level of play for overmuch of the past 2 games.

"I deliberation this week volition truly specify who we are," Rhule said.

The Vikings are aiming to scope a .500 people earlier an unfastened week connected the schedule.

"I deliberation it would beryllium a bully milestone for america to get to there," manager Mike Zimmer said. "If we tin conscionable proceed to improve, we'll triumph our stock of games."

Zimmer said he's encouraged by the attack from backmost Kirk Cousins, who has go much vocal.

Cousins knows the Panthers tin beryllium pugnacious to propulsion against. They're allowing conscionable 161.6 yards per crippled successful the air, tops successful the NFL.

"A truly bully defense," Cousins said. "They challenged america past year."

The Vikings won 28-27 against Carolina past November astatine home.

Minnesota has utilized much three-wide set-ups connected discourtesy this season, thing that Cousins said tin connection much variety.

"So overmuch of it is situationally based," Cousins said. "You effort to survey each concern of however volition they support america oregon play against us."

A substance of walk formations could beryllium adjacent much invaluable against the Panthers, who've dealt with injuries and important unit changes successful the secondary the past fewer weeks. It's unclear if Carolina newcomer CJ Henderson, a cornerback, volition beryllium available.

Minnesota, which has dropped some of its roadworthy outings, managed conscionable 1 touchdown successful past week's 19-17 location triumph against Detroit. The result was determined connected Greg Joseph's last-second 54-yard tract goal.

That helped soothe immoderate of the shortcomings for Minnesota.

"It's each fixable. We conscionable got to cleanable it up," Zimmer said. "We request to beryllium focused again."

Both teams are waiting connected the presumption of standout moving backs. Minnesota's Dalvin Cook has missed 2 games, including past week, with an ankle injury. Alexander Mattison has been filling successful for Cook.

"They're not going to enactment maine retired determination if they consciousness I'm a liability," Cook said Wednesday.

Carolina's Christian McCaffrey has been retired for 2 games due to the fact that of a hamstring injury, but could beryllium acceptable for enactment against Minnesota, Rhule said. He has practiced connected a constricted ground aboriginal this week.

Rookie moving backmost Chuba Hubbard gained 101 yards connected 24 carries successful the Philadelphia game.

"I deliberation he'll beryllium a tremendous complement whenever Christian is backmost with us," Rhule said.

The Vikings are 9-6 all-time against Carolina, but conscionable 2-3 successful 5 erstwhile trips to Charlotte.

--Field Level Media

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