Around the NFL  

 

Mike Zimmer repeats desire for Vikings to run more

Print

After watching his team tally just 13 rushing attempts in Sunday's 24-10 loss to the New England Patriots, Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer is starting to sound like a broken record.

Zimmer has been vocal with a desire to run the ball more in the past month, and he repeated his belief that the approach is the best way to get the offense back on track.

"Same thing I have been saying all year," Zimmer said, via via Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

The offensive play-calling falls on coordinator John DeFilippo, who didn't take advantage of running back Dalvin Cook's 62 yards rushing on five carries in the first half, a healthy 12.4 yards per carry. Cook had four carries for 22 yards in the second half, while Latavius Murray chipped in with four carries for 11 yards on the game.

Zimmer, a defensive-minded head coach, provided a one-word response when asked after the game if he thought the Vikings ran enough against the Patriots.

"No," Zimmer said.

On the season, the Vikings have 253 rushing attempts, averaging 21.1 carries per game, to rank 29th in the league. In three of the team's five losses, the Vikings failed to top 55 yards rushing. The teams ranking below the Vikings are the New York Giants, Atlanta Falcons and Cincinnati Bengals, a trio quickly fading from the postseason chase.

In Sunday's loss, the Vikings had no reason to go away from Cook or Murray when considering the score was tied 10-10 late in the third quarter. And for a team in playoff contention, the Vikings (6-5-1) need to figure a way to appease Zimmer's desire to feed the ball to the running backs.

Well, it's either that or Zimmer should consider giving a firm directive to DeFilippo to call more running plays.

Print