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Duuuhhh… This can’t be overstated. All three of the Vikings opponents have questionable run defenses. However, that doesn’t mean that purple running backs will have cakewalks.

Look for the left side of the line to display veteran-caliber blocking as they continue to mesh. Note that the recent improvement of the left has come along with the line up changes on the right side of the line. The insertion of Rosenthal following Marcus Johnson’s ankle injury has sparked an improved chemistry along the whole line.

The result is former Lion Artose Pinner racking up a gaudy 125 yards against his old team. That doesn’t say so much for what the Lions let go as it does for the Vikings line. Imagine what will happen when 1000-yard runner Chester Taylor returns from rib injuries.

By earnest, I mean middle of the road. While the Vikes are rated at the back end of pass defense, the numbers are misleading. Since teams are thoroughly unable to run against the Williams Wall, opponents have smartly passed, passed, passed the ball.

Take into account that every team (except the Vikings) have capable receivers on offense. Even milquetoast schemes will produce decent numbers if they throw 45-plus times a game. The telling stat is the Vikings are ranked 13th in the league yards per completion.

The purple defensive scheme allows for a healthy amount of freelancing in the secondary, but the re-implementation of blitzing from the nickleback or weak side linebackers could pressure opposing QBs into some bad decisions.

However, there is no one approach can counted on as a magic bullet against Pennington, Favre, and Bulger. Unlike the latter, Pennington is more cerebral than gunslinger. Given time, Broadway Chad can cut up defenses by completing high-percentage passes underneath in lieu of a run game. Conversely, Farve has made a hall of fame career turning broken plays into first downs on the run in the backfield. Although St. Louis has loosened their quick-timing passing attack when offense-happy head coach Scott Linehan took over the greatest show on turf, their game plan based upon taking advantage of WRs Holt and Bruce’s precise route running.

In all three cases, increased pass rush from the Vike’s front four is crucial to create turnovers, which brings us to:

Any offense will have considerably more success when they go to work on a short field. That goes double for Johnson.

A major component of Johnson’s success last year was based upon teams not knowing how the Vikings were going to formulate their passing attack. Two things have changed: First, the shortcoming of the west coast offense is that defenders know most of the passing is based on short-to-intermediate routes. This shortens the field for probable routes considerably. Secondly, defensive coordinators have had a whole off-season to study tape on Brad. Even though the offensive scheme has undergone major changes, one things stays the same: Johnson’s wind up and release are slow, and he’s not getting any quicker with age. Thus, defenders are coached to sit on routes, picking the ball off with relative ease.

The answer for this is selling the play-action pass (thus buying precious time for BJ to wind up) by convincingly running the ball. However, the Vikings have had to play plenty of catch-up this year, which is always detrimental to the running game. Ironically, the Vikes get behind turning the ball over, and if they do get into the red zone, they blow it on third down.

The catch-22 of this is receivers aren’t catching the ball. Despite this, Johnson is still completing over 60% of his throws, which is more than ample to run an effective west coast offense. Either way, everybody needs to help him help self.

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Vikings ranks No.1 for penalities. They should be better disciplined to avoid those unncessary/stupid penalties.

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Post Keep Brad Johnson as Starting Quaterback 
Everyone is blaming Brad Johnson for the poor offense. Yes, Brad hasn't thrown many touchdowns this season. It is easy to point fingers at him, but the question is: who the hell can he throw the ball to? Look at these pathetic Vikings receivers - who is doing their job?

Brad is getting harrassed every game. Where is the offensive line that is supposed to protect the quarterback? STOP blaming Johnson. He is the best the Vikings has right now. Don't forget Johnson took the Tempa Bay to the Super Bowl title not too long ago. No one else on the team has something like that to brag about.

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