Tank Time? Extra Dangerous Information Arrives for Vikings’ Well being Forward of Week 18

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports activities

Nicely, possibly a loss wouldn’t be the worst factor on this planet. In spite of everything, the ultimate damage report of the week comprises extra unhealthy information for the Vikings’ well being (or lack thereof).

Nook Byron Murphy Jr. will miss one other recreation, that means the Vikings may have operated with out their prime nook for the ultimate three weeks of the season. Making issues even worse is that Mekhi Blackmon — at this level, Minnesota’s CB2 — may also miss the sport.

NFL: New Orleans Saints at Minnesota Vikings
Nov 12, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings cornerback Mekhi Blackmon (5) celebrates his interception together with his staff towards the New Orleans Saints within the fourth quarter at U.S. Financial institution Stadium. Necessary Credit score: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports activities

Akayleb Evans is as soon as once more going to be the staff’s prime nook. The difficulty is that he has been borderline unplayable not too long ago. The Packers deliberately picked on the sophomore all recreation and have been rewarded for doing so. Evans completed his day having allowed 7/10 passes to be accomplished for 119 yards. He missed 3 tackles.

Minnesota will thus be leaning on a nook whose confidence seems to be gone alongside Andrew Sales space Jr. after which (very probably) some apply squad name ups in Jaylin Williams and/or Joejuan Williams.

Extra Dangerous Information for the Vikings’ Well being

People, the unhealthy information doesn’t cease there.

The Vikings gained’t have the assistance of Brian O’Neill up entrance. The beginning proper deal with has solely been obtainable for 14 video games in 2023, lacking the pair of losses in Week 15 and Week 16. David Quessenberry will hop into the beginning lineup (where he has done a nice job, all things considered).

Brian O'Neill
Oct 2, 2022; London, United Kingdom; Minnesota Vikings offensive deal with Brian O’Neill (75) throughout the NFL Worldwide Sequence recreation at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Necessary Credit score: Peter van den Berg-USA TODAY Sports activities

For simplicity, check out the complete checklist of damage designations for Minnesota (official announcement):

  • Byron Murphy, Out
  • Mekhi Blackmon, Out
  • Theo Jackson, Out
  • Jaquelin Roy, Out
  • Jalen Nailor, Out
  • Brian O’Neill, Out
  • Christian Darrisaw, Questionable
  • Ed Ingram, Questionable

Nick Mullens goes to be the primary man in terms of flinging the pigskin. There’s an opportunity that he’s preventing for his spot as Minnesota’s QB2 of the longer term. The staff genuinely does like Jaren Corridor and needs to rally round his upside as he continues growing.

Mullens, then, might find yourself in a precarious spot if Kirk Cousins will get a brand new deal after which Minnesota opts for a QB in the upcoming draft. Placing collectively a superb effort amidst the entire damage turmoil would perform as an excellent reminder for why he ought to stick round in 2024.

Dec 24, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Nick Mullens (12) reacts whereas being chased by Detroit Lions linebacker Alex Anzalone (34) throughout the second quarter at U.S. Financial institution Stadium. Necessary Credit score: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports activities

Far be it from me to inform Mullens how you can do his job, however one would assume that sending the ball in Justin Jefferson’s route can be an excellent place to start out.

The WR1 is 118 yards away from hitting 1,000 yards in 2023. Getting him to the milestone can be a sensible transfer on condition that the franchise is looking to keep their cornerstone player happy.

Mullens is sitting on 67.3% passing, 910 yards, 5 TDs, and 6 INTs going into Week 18. He’ll have a tricky time bettering on these numbers if he doesn’t look to Jefferson early and sometimes, particularly with the turmoil at offensive deal with.

NFL: Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings
Dec 24, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings large receiver Justin Jefferson (18) celebrates his landing towards the Detroit Lions throughout the second quarter at U.S. Financial institution Stadium. Necessary Credit score: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports activities

Kickoff between the Vikings and Lions will happen at 12 p.m. CST. Dropping the sport will imply Minnesota sits at 7-10 and with an opportunity of securing a top-10 choice within the 2024 NFL Draft.

Editor’s Be aware: Data from Pro Football Reference and PFF helped with this piece.

The Full Gamut of Minnesota’s Possible Draft Slots as Week 18 Nears

Okay. Joudry is the Senior Editor for Vikings Territory and PurplePTSD. He has been masking the Vikings full time for the reason that summer time of 2021. He will be discovered on Twitter and as a co-host for Notes from the North, a humble Vikings podcast.

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