Graff: Vikings Didn't Heed Zimmer's Warnings

Mike Zimmer was "awfully frustrated" with his players after the Vikings lost to the Bears on Sunday

After Hours With Amy Lawrence
November 19, 2018 - 9:30 am

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The Minnesota Vikings traveled to Chicago for a pivotal divisional game this past weekend, and they left with a 25-20 loss to the NFC North-leading Bears.

Head coach Mike Zimmer wasn’t happy about it, saying after the game that the Vikings didn’t heed any of his warnings.

“On Wednesday, he stood up in front of the whole team and made a couple of points,” The Athletic Vikings reporter Chad Graff said on After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “One of them being defense: Watch Mitchell Trubisky. He’s got better legs than you think. He can scramble. You have to really make sure that you wrap up on him.”

Well, on the Bears’ first possession, Trubisky scrambled on 3rd-and-8 and picked up a first down. The 12-play drive ended with a Cody Parkey field goal.

“It would have been a three-and-out, and he picked that up by scrambling,” Graff said. “His mobility is better than a lot of people realize. So he picks that up and the Bears go down and score. And that really followed throughout the game. He was the Bears’ leading rusher through the first half.”

Trubisky finished with 10 rushes for 43 yards.

“The other (warning) was that the Chicago Bears’ defense is the best in the NFL at getting takeaways – both interceptions and fumbles,” Graff said. “So Kirk Cousins, don’t throw 50-50 balls. He threw two interceptions, including a pick-six.”

Indeed, Eddie Jackson’s pick-six gave the Bears a 22-6 lead midway through the fourth quarter. Cousins finished 30-of-46 for 262 yards, two touchdowns, two interceptions and two sacks.

“(Zimmer) also said to his running backs, ‘Be very careful with the ball. They will try to strip it. They’ll go for that,’” Graff said. “And sure enough Dalvin Cook fumbled in the red zone.”

Cook finished with nine rushes for 12 yards. As a team, the Vikings rushed 14 times for just 22 yards (1.6 yards per carry).

“Basically all the things Mike Zimmer harped on, those things went wrong,” Graff said. “He was awfully frustrated after the game.”

The Vikings (5-4-1) hope to rebound against the Packers (4-5-1) on Sunday Night Football at 8:20 p.m. ET, while the Bears (7-3) play the Lions (4-6) in Detroit on Thanksgiving at 12:30 p.m. ET.