Joseph says Vikings better than ’11 Giants
Minnesota defensive tackle Linval Joseph told reporters Friday that this Vikings team is the best he has ever been a part of. Joseph started 15 games for the 2011 New York Giants team that defeated Tom Brady and the Patriots in the Super Bowl. But the big man in the middle insists that team cannot compare.
“This team is better,’’ Joseph said. “It’s a different team, a younger team and we’re hungry and we want a ring and want to just keep winning one game at a time and just keep doing our job and just keep proving to everybody that we’re a good team.’’
It is easy to see why he believes that. The 2011 Giants crept into the postseason with a 9-7 record and rode a hot streak for the ring. This Vikings team has nine wins already through just 11 games. Time will tell if they can finish what they have started.
Keenum earns Player of the Month honors
The NFL named Viking quarterback Case Keenum NFC Offensive Player of the Month for November earlier this week. Keenum is just the fifth quarterback in Vikings history to earn such an honor.
The veteran Keenum thrived this past month on efficiency above all else. In all three November games, he completed at least 70 percent of his passes and had a passer of at least 100. In total, Keenum amassed 866 yards, seven touchdowns and just two interceptions during that span while only being sacked twice.
Keenum joins Warren Moon, Randall Cunningham, Daunte Culpepper (twice) and Brett Favre as Minnesota quarterbacks with Player of the Month honors. Interestingly, with the exception of Culpepper, those quarterbacks were also cast-offs that found new life in Minnesota. For whatever reason, the Vikings franchise is earning a reputation as a quarterback reclamation station.
Both Minnesota and Atlanta enter today’s matchup relatively healthy with only two injury-designated players apiece. Vikings right tackle Mike Remmers will miss once again, this time due to a lower back injury. Remmers sat out three straight games with a concussion. He has cleared concussion protocol but he injured the back in practice on Wednesday. Rashod Hill will get his fourth consecutive start in Remmers’ stead.
Linebacker Eric Kendricks missed practice Wednesday with a hip injury and is listed as questionable. He returned on a limited basis Thursday, however and Head coach Mike Zimmer says that Kendricks will play.
Atlanta will also be without one starter, cornerback Desmond Trufant. Trufant suffered a concussion against Tampa Bay a week ago. Linebacker Sean Weatherspoon is listed as questionable with an illness and missed the last two days of practice. Weatherspoon is just a rotational linebacker and did not figure to factor much in the game except on special teams.
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