Griffen says Vikings will come together, beat Lions

The headline will be that Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen guaranteed victory over the Detroit Lions on Sunday, but the reality is that the new captain gave one heck of a speech to reporters on Wednesday that just happened to include a statement of confidence.

"We are a good team. We practice like a good team each and every day. I don't know what that showing was," he said, via the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. "We got Detroit coming up this week Sunday. That's our focus now. San Fran, it was a blow to us ... They're more of a team than we were."

He added: "As a team we prepared too hard to go out there and put a performance like that in. I feel as a team we're going to come together and we're going to go out there and beat Detroit. I'm very angry right now as you can see, because we prepared way too hard. But we're going to go out there and get it."

Afterward, Griffen earned some praise from head coach Mike Zimmer, who was just as upset as anyone after the loss to San Francisco.

Beating the Lions would certainly be a statement and proof that the Vikings are on the right track. The team was a trendy pick by analysts to reach the playoffs this year and it's easy to see why. They are loaded with young talent on defense, they have Adrian Peterson back and Teddy Bridgewater should take a leap in his second season.

None of that, however, was visible on opening night against an inspired 49ers team. Peterson averaged 3.1 yards per carry and Charles Johnson was only targeted three times. Bridgewater had a quarterback rating below 80 and was sacked five times.

They need to prove that they are the team everyone has made them out to be on paper. Griffen certainly seems to think they are.

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