ESPN Box Score
--You can't win in the preseason: a good performance doesn't mean anything, and a bad performance is a bad performance. Watching preseason football is like listening to a podcast about running while running. I love running, but listening to talk about running while running just seems like a circle of hell. I love the Vikings and I love football, but somehow when I'm anticipating the Viking season, putting this slow, dreary stuff on my TV just seems to make it all seem a bore. This stuff sucks, but it's the sort of thing DVR is made for, to glance through to see those few things you might be interested in seeing.
--Cordarrelle Patterson needs to play a lot. I was impressed tonight by many of the targets he didn't catch: he was almost there on several plays, showing an impressive ranginess. He looks like a player that can make occasional plays on poorly thrown balls. He also showed something over the middle.
But he also needs to return kicks to help this team. It's, um, doubtful (?) the Vikings will get competent quarterback play, and so giving a speedy and shifty guy like Patterson a chance to gain extra yards on a quarterbackless open field play can help the team. If he picks up an extra ten yards on a return, that's one fewer first down the team needs.
--Can you judge a punter by preseason performance? Isn't catching a ball and punting it the same whether you're going against starters or backups, whether your opponent is playing vanilla or clever, whether your opponent even cares who wins the game? It seems that way to me. Jeff Locke needs to be competent or we might start asking "Just why was Chris Kluwe let go again?" So far Locke seems fairly competent.
--Is Stephen Burton's entire football function to do impressive things in meaningless games?
--Sometimes I'm scared to watch preseason football, because I'm worried that some plays I see might actually stick in my memory, and then I've got something truly, utterly meaningless stuck in my mind, and that might leave out room for something that is actually worth remembering.
(I should change the weekly post to National Flake League: I swear this week I always knew what day of the week it was, but when it came to football, I kept thinking it was a day behind and that I'd write a post in the afternoon, until Friday when I kept seeing people wearing Viking jerseys and suddenly realized, "Hey, they play tonight!" When summer is over there will be structure and I'm less likely to forget what day it is).