by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer (9/21/14) After their offense -- or more specifically, quarterback Matt Cassell -- betrayed them Week 2 against New England, the Vikings bounced back with a decent defensive performance against the hosting Saints in Week 3, limiting them to 20 points on 396 yards.
They didn't have many big plays, just a sack from rookie linebacker Anthony Barr, but still, limiting the high-scoring Saints to 20 points on 396 yards is an accomplishment unto itself. Remember: The Vikings defense had no shortage of big plays Week 1 at St. Louis, recording five sacks, two interceptions and a touchdown.
Unfortunately, Minnesota has another tough matchup Week 4 against the Falcons, so don't count on the Vikings DST just yet in Fantasy.
Anthony Barr records first sack
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer (9/21/14) Vikings rookie linebacker Anthony Barr recorded the first sack of his career Week 3 at New Orleans, taking down quarterback Drew Brees just before halftime. Barr had five tackles in all, two of them solo.
Robert Blanton leads way in tackles
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer (9/21/14) Vikings defensive back Robert Blanton recorded a team-high 10 tackles, including seven solo, Week 3 at New Orleans. He has yet to record fewer than six tackles in a game this season.
Harrison Smith not much of a factor
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer (9/21/14) Vikings defensive back Harrison Smith, who had a sack, an interception and a touchdown in Week 1 and followed it up with eight tackles in Week 2, wasn't as much of factor Week 3 at New Orleans. He had four tackles, including two solo.
Smith had 58 tackles in eight games last year after recording 104 in 2012.
Different QB little help for Cordarrelle Patterson
by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer (9/21/14) After picking up 56 total yards, all receiving, Week 2 against the Patriots, Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson was looking to bounce back Week 3 at New Orleans. Instead, he delivered an even lower total. He had 61 yards on four catches, yes, but he also lost 7 on one carry.
This time, the play of quarterback Matt Cassel, who threw four interceptions in Week 2, wasn't to blame. Cassel broke his foot early in the second quarter and was replaced by rookie Teddy Bridgewater. Bridgewater and Patterson connected on three passes for 33 yards over the better part of three quarters.
Patterson will look to get in sync with Bridgewater at home against a suspect Falcons defense in Week 4.
No Headlines Available
When the Vikings hired Mike Zimmer as their new head coach, they also hired the architect of the Bengals' outstanding defense and an aggressive defensive mind. Zimmer is responsible for some solid defenses not just in Cincinnati but previously in Dallas, and he's already making his mark in Minnesota. The Vikings added beefy defensive tackle Linval Joseph, cagey cornerback Captain Munnerlyn, drafted pass rusher Anthony Barr and re-signed defensive end Everson Griffen this spring. Combine these guys with key defenders like Harrison Smith, Brian Robison and Chad Greenway and you'll recognize that this is a defense that could make a jump in 2014. Tack on Cordarrelle Patterson returning kicks and you're looking at a sleeper DST that has a nice Week 1 matchup at St. Louis (before five nightmarish matchups). You can consider them with a final-round flier in deeper leagues.