Griffen's speed adds to defense's options

  • Article by: MARK CRAIG , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 29, 2011 - 10:39 PM

The defensive end also will see action at weak-side linebacker as the Vikings look to add depth.

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bruisedupAug. 30, 11 1:08 AM

Sounds crazy. I could see Griffen being tried out at strong-side over the tight end but the weak-side is usually reserved for the most athletic linebacker on the team. The weak-side LB could almost be used like a safety. I could see Griffen really jammin the wide receivers on the line of scrimmage but covering a receiver could be a real challenge for him. I could also see some balls being dropped because someone heard his footsteps. If he is that athletic he could really be dangerous back there.

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bplarsonAug. 30, 11 7:45 AM

In the Vikings defense the weak-side LB plays almost identical to the strong-side, so my guess is the packages where he would be standing up would most likely be situational. Having him "blitz" off the corner along with Allen and the rest of the DL and you've got some serious pressure coming at the QB and on running plays he can take on the pulling guard/fullback, whatever without giving up ground. He clearly would be a liability on passing downs if he didn't blitz though. 4.5 is ridiculous for his size, why not!

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RealVikeAug. 30, 11 8:31 AM

I'm starting to see Griffen and Ballard as 2 nice surprises. Now if Erin and Jamarca could do the same we might just have a decent defense.

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tpsmkemkAug. 30, 11 9:05 AM

Nice to have another Agua Fria Owl contribute to the Vikings. (The 1st being Randall McDaniel) In High School, Everson was a freak of an athlete. Now with the guidance of the Vikings coaching staff, he is going to be a valuable weapon for the defense. Heck, let try running the ball on goal line situations--he lead Arizona in rushing in his senior year.

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gomntwinsAug. 30, 1111:08 AM

Ben Leber could have helped here. Because we signed Greenway and E.J. Henderson to big contracts management tried to be cheap and let Leber go. Ben is a South Dakota guy and I think he would have signed for a reasonable price. With lack of depth and experience at WLB, the move to dump Leber may come back to bite the Vikings.

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dreski83Aug. 30, 1111:30 AM

Its good to see Herron can tackle when he's on target, but other LB options are needed, so I say go for it Griffen! His size and speed are something special if coach Pagac can position him right. If Griffen can quickly learn on the fly, I can excuse a few potential 1st down plays in hopes that he can step up.

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kfanvikeAug. 30, 1111:40 AM

The, "Why not?" part of this is simple: I cannot work. Frazier and Singletary are superb defensive minds, and in terms of football accomplishment, I have an empty resume, so commenting on this seems more than indulgent. BUT, it seems I have collective pro football wisdom on my side: The cutoff weight appears to be about 250 for linebacker - middle, strong or weak side. Is Griffen fast enough to justify consideration? Sure. But I thought - THOUGHT, quickness was part of the equation. 273, and the laws of physics cannot be changed to suit fanciful experiment. Lateral quickness and reaction time - not to mention pass coverage (can you see this guy trying to cover Findlay of the Packers?), just might have something to say about this. Bad idea, waste of time, and of course I'd like to be wrong, but football history is hard to argue with - there is a reason this isn't done. Case made.

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bigmarAug. 30, 1112:17 PM

Kfanvike...you make a great point. Griffens size is not prototypical for the position. And J. Finley of the Packers would run right by him of course Finley would run by most LB's anyways if not all in the league except maybe Troy Polamalu who covers a lot of ground.

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yoyoyouyoAug. 30, 1112:28 PM

I would put Griffen on the left and move Robison into that role. He is built more like a LB. I don't see Robison doing anything this year. He gets pushed around on the run and isn't strong enought to get to the QB. Bad signing. I hope he proves me wrong. Also, Jared Allen's career is OVER. He is now an average DE.

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djdogg5Aug. 30, 11 1:22 PM

I gotta gree with yoyo Jared Allen is average at BEST.. He is NEVER in the backfield and never makes any tackles. He is almost always just standing there when the play is over. He doesnt cause any havoc in the backfield anymore and we need some hungry young DE that WANTS to paly, not just show up and get that FAT check. He is the MAIN problem on the defense right now.. K Williams needs to come back and play. Ballard looks like hes the hungriest of them all and he'll be starting by game 4 or 5 if not sooner. Offense moved the ball at will with AP running and play action so if the D can just keep teams under 21 we'll have a shot in most games.. thats a pretty big IF however.. SKOL VIKES!!!

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