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Bleacher Report – Vikings

4 thoughts: Sam Bradford’s new records, US Bank protesters, Laquon Treadwell

By Derek Wetmore

MINNEAPOLIS – The Vikings beat the Bears 38-10 in a meaningless NFL game Sunday afternoon. The actions on the field were, in my view, overshadowed by the actions going on hundreds of feet above the field.

This column presents 4 thoughts from Sunday:

1. Sam Bradford, record holder

Sam Bradford has now completed more passes this season than any other Vikings QB in a single season in the history of the franchise.

Sam Bradford sets one NFL record and one Vikings record in season finale

He also has the highest single-season completion percentage in NFL history, according to ESPN Stats & Info.

Sam Bradford’s completion percentage of 71.6% this season is the highest in NFL history. pic.twitter.com/1l1eYYPOtT

— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) January 1, 2017

Daunte Culpepper once completed 379 passes in a single season, and Bradford passed that mark in the second quarter Sunday. Bradford finished the year with 395 completions.

For that, we must tip our cap and also point out the ‘yeah, but…’

On one hand, it’s impressive considering that Bradford missed the first week after the Vikings traded for him, had to learn the offense on the fly, had a very weak offensive line most of the year and had his offensive coordinator resign in the middle of the season.

The flip side of that coin is that Bradford’s completions are typically of the shorter variety, and despite the high number of total catches, the Vikings offense under Bradford still hasn’t scored many points. Bradford entered Sunday’s season finale averaging almost exactly 7.0 yards per attempt, which validates what you see on the field: A short-pass West Coast offense that relies on yards after the catch or stringing together many successful plays in a row to grab first downs and score points.

Matthew Coller had an excellent breakdown of the Vikings’ QB situation going forward as a Sunday feature. The easy play would be to roll with Bradford for the beginning of next season, given the uncertainty surrounding Teddy Bridgewater’s knee injury. But is that the right move? What else could the Vikings consider? Is Bridgewater going to be better than Bradford is right now?

The future of the Vikings, part 1: The quarterbacks

Bradford said after the game that the completion percentage record is “pretty cool [but] I would trade that for wins any day.”

2. Surprising scene

Everything that happened in Sunday’s game overshadowed for many by two protesters who brought climbing gear into the stadium and descended from the rafters with a large banner protesting one of US Bank’s investments.

After the game ended, protesters climbed up their ropes and down the structural stadium truss to the concourse.

For me, the scene alternated between scary and surreal, as security forced seven rows of fans to vacate their seats directly below the suspended protesters. The banner read “DIVEST,” was in apparent protest of an oil pipeline through North Dakota.

As it was ending and the protesters climbed to safety – where they reportedly were taken to be medically evaluated

3. Backup quarterbacks

There was a lot of football played Sunday and it didn’t always resemble the game we watched all year with the Vikings. The well-known football cliché is that when a season has reached the point when I team has nothing left to play for, players will make “business decisions” by not risking injury to make a play. I’m not here to question players for doing that – they have incredibly short windows to earn money in the league, on average, and if they get hurt, it adversely affects that window.

We saw Shaun Hill and David Fales take snaps at the end of the game, as the score was out of hand and there was no sense in risking injury for Sunday’s starters. Side note on Fales: I remember covering a Gophers football game at TCF Bank Stadium against San Jose State when Fales was their starting QB. His accuracy was impressive that day with Vikings GM Rick Spielman in attendance.

4. Where’d the first-round pick go?

Laquon Treadwell was inactive with an ankle injury, which means his first year in the NFL is a substantial disappointment for the Vikings.

Treadwell’s vanishing act might go mostly unnoticed –Adam Thielen had a chance to pull in 1,000 yards with a big day Sunday and Stefon Diggs posted another strong season amid turmoil on Minnesota’s offense. But any way you slice it, a first-round pick wide receiver like Treadwell finishing the season with three targets on offense is a bad look.

Obviously we haven’t heard the last of Treadwell, but some fans of the team already have pulled out their label maker and stamped the word “BUST” across his football card. It’s too soon to say that, in my opinion, but his first NFL season was a far cry from what you might call promising.

Treadwell’s rookie struggles reaching historic porportions

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The post 4 thoughts: Sam Bradford’s new records, US Bank protesters, Laquon Treadwell appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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