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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Zimmer: Loss to Carolina gave Vikings ‘sense of urgency’

By Matthew Coller

To a man, the Minnesota Vikings have said that last season’s collapse influenced their success this season.

Head coach Mike Zimmer said Wednesday that the team’s road loss to the Carolina Panthers acted as another reminder of how quickly things can change.

“What I talked to them about was, two weeks ago we lost and we had a new sense of urgency and a new focus,” Zimmer said. “That’s what we need to do again. Just because we won this last week doesn’t mean we can go back to the way we were and end up getting beat.”

The Vikings still have plenty to play for as they chase home field advantage in the playoffs.

“It’s extremely important,” tight end Kyle Rudolph said. “Our first goal was to win the NFC North and clinch our berth into the playoffs. Now it’s about seeding.”

The Vikings will be matching up with a Packers team that has been eliminated from the playoffs and without their starting quarterback. Brett Hundley will start in place of Aaron Rodgers, who was placed on injured reserve Monday.

“[Rodgers] did everything he could to come back to help his team make a playoffs push, now that that’s not an option it wouldn’t make sense to put a future Hall of Famer out there if he’s not healthy,” Rudolph said.

Hundley was picked off three times by the Vikings in the last matchup.

“You can tell he’s watched Rodgers for some years,” Zimmer said. “He’s got a lot of the same manorisms. They’ve changed a little bit on some things, there’s a few different runs here and there and a few different throws, but really not a lot.”

Packers head coach, speaking with the Twin Cities media on Wednesday, said he’s seen growth from the team’s backup since he was forced to enter in the first quarter of the Week 6 matchup.

“It’s a lot different than coming off the bench as opposed to having a full week of preparation,” McCarthy said. “You make some mistakes, you learn from that, you have some success, you handle that…he’s stacked some successful plays, particularly in critical moments in a game, we’re excited about that. There’s no replacement for experience at the quarterback position. Case Keenum is an example of that.”

The post Zimmer: Loss to Carolina gave Vikings ‘sense of urgency’ appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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