Found December 03, 2012 on Fox Sports North:
Vikings_vs_seahawks_141d
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. Leslie Frazier knows the limitations of his 6-6 Minnesota Vikings very well. Twelve games into the season and clinging to fading playoff hopes, Frazier knows there is no savior that is going to appear magically to rescue Minnesota's last-ranked passing offense. "It's not like at this time of the season somebody's going to drop a special guy in your lap," Frazier said Monday, spreading his arms skyward as if he was hoping for some sort of divine intervention. "It's just not the case." No, at this point of the season, the Vikings are left to fly or fall with an offense that falters when it has to go to the air. Despite a rushing offense that ranks third in the league and a defense that's held up for the most part this season, Minnesota's season has slipped without a credible passing game. Frazier has watched all year as quarterback Christian Ponder and the team's receivers continue to misconnect. After Sunday's 23-14 loss in which Ponder was 12 of 25 for 119 yards passing, with two backbreaking interceptions, the Vikings have slipped to last in the league in passing, averaging only 180.6 net yards per game. Ponder, as the quarterback, is heaped with criticism and rightly so. But Ponder shares the blame in an inept passing game with his wide receivers, especially since Percy Harvin, an early-season star has missed the past three games. Without Harvin, who even at his best wasn't stretching the field, Minnesota has lacked any help for Ponder down the field or on the outside. No more evident is the lack of a reliable wide receiver -- other than Harvin -- than Sunday's loss to the Packers. Jerome Simpson, the offseason hero who's underachieved in the regular season, was the first wide receiver to catch a pass from Ponder on Sunday. The catch highlighted part of what the Vikings expected from Simpson, an 18-yard catch on an important drive. The problem? The catch came with just 2 minutes, 55 seconds left in the game. That's right, Minnesota went 57:05 of game clock before a wide receiver caught a pass. "It wasn't complicated what (the Packers) were doing," Frazier said. "We just got to do a better job at times of finding ways to win in one-on-one situations. Also, when a guy has created some separation, get the football to him on time. And we have some occasions where we didn't create separation like we needed to, a lot like we thought we were going into the game, and other times where we had that separation and we didn't get the ball there in a timely fashion and it cost us." Simpson, who has just 14 total catches this season, had seven targets in Sunday's game. He caught two passes. Rookie Jarius Wright (one catch, 13 yards) was the only other wide receiver with a catch in the game. A week earlier it was seven dropped passes that were a big culprit in a loss. Harvin's absence has been a blow to a receiving corps that was already lacking for big playmakers. Even missing three games, Harvin's team-leading reception totals (62 catches, 677 yards) still are far and away tops on the team. Tight end Kyle Rudolph has 45 catches. Meanwhile the rest of the team's wide receivers have totaled 68 catches to Harvin's 62. Lack of separation from defenders has been an issue. But Frazier said he's also noticed Ponder being hesitant at times to release passes. "In our league, it's not very often that guys are going to be wide open," Frazier said. "So when we say throw it on time, on time means when the guy comes out of his break deliver the football. You've got to be able to make that decision whether you can get it in there or not. If you end up holding it a little bit longer, in our league the guys are good enough to close if you do that. So when I say throw the ball on time, that's part of it. When my back foot hits my drop point, get the football out, go through your progressions, do the things that are necessary to be a real good NFL quarterback." Opponent's defensive approach won't change with running back Adrian Peterson having an MVP-type season. Frazier's left to hope Harvin can return quickly and try to extract something more from Simpson, Wright, Michael Jenkins, Devin Aromashodu and Stephen Burton. "We think we have some guys that are capable of creating some separation," Frazier said. "We'll continue to schematically, as coaches, try to find ways to scheme coverages if we can and get some guys some open looks. But we have to get it done. There's so much at stake we have to find a way to get it done. We have to work at it as coaches and as players and find a way to get it done." Follow Brian Hall on Twitter.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
RELATED ARTICLES

Vikings WR Percy Harvin’s Injury Downgraded to a Grade 3 Ankle Sprain

Vikings WR Percy Harvin, it turns out, has been recovering from a Grade 3, full ligament tear in his ankle, per ESPN 1500. Harvin will attempt to return to practice on Wednesday. He would provide another explosive element to the Vikings’ offense if he could return in time for the team’s game against the Bears. The Vikings, at 6-6, are stumbling to the finish line and while Harvin’s...

Percy Harvin’s season could soon be over

Minnesota Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier indicated today that wide receiver Percy Harvin’s season could be over. When Frazier was asked if Harvin is done, he replied: “Hard to say.” Now that we know Harvin completely tore a ligament in his foot, I would think the odds are that he won’t be coming back this season.   var _CI = _CI || {}; (function() { var script = document...

Vikings noncommittal about Harvins return

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. More than four weeks since receiver Percy Harvin badly sprained his left ankle, Minnesota Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said Wednesday it was "hard to say" whether Harvin will return this season and wouldn't get into specifics about the injury or Harvin's return. Frazier was cryptic after being more forthright in earlier weeks. "There'...

Harvin's Injury More Severe Than Realized

Vikings receiver Percy Harvin's ankle injury was more severe than many realized. Harvin suffered a complete ligament tear that can take 4-6 weeks to completely heal. SOURCE: 1500 ESPN Twin CitiesFantasy Spin:Harvin will try to practice again Wednesday. He's currently in his fifth week of recovery after suffering the injury on Nov. 4 at Seattle. 1500 ESPN Twin Cities suggests...

Vikings Rumors: Percy Harvin Has Ligament Tear

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Percy Harvin may have been attempting to recover from a more significant ankle injury than initially believed, reports Tom Pelissero of 1500 ESPN, who says the dynamic playmaker suffered a Grade 3 sprain of his left ankle, meaning there was a complete ligament tear involved. The Minnesota Vikings' top receiver suffered a Grade 3 sprain of...

Report: Percy Harvin completely tore a ligament in his ankle

According to Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com, Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Percy Harvin completely tore the ligament in his ankle.  What’s amazing is that he’s still expected to return and will try to practice on Wednesday. Percy Harvin will try to practice again on Wednesday, continuing his push to return from an injury more significant than many realized. The Minnesota Vikings’...

Vikings Injury Report: Percy Harvin Out Against Packers

The Minnesota Vikings have downgraded wide receiver Percy Harvin to out and he will miss his third straight game today when his team takes on the Green Bay Packers, reports Tom Pelissero of ESPN 1500. The Minnesota Vikings downgraded their top receiver from doubtful to out on Saturday, leaving Harvin at home while they travel for Sunday's game at Green Bay. Harvin has...

Vikings WR Harvin inactive for game at Lambeau

Minnesota wide receiver Percy Harvin is inactive for Sunday's game against the Green Bay Packers, the third straight he's missed with a sprained left ankle. The Vikings ruled Harvin out Saturday. It's a blow for the Vikings, a game behind the Packers in the NFC North and battling for a wild-card spot. Harvin led the league in total yards, including receiving, rushing...

Stakes higher than ever for Vikings' Ponder

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. Leslie Frazier stood at a podium Monday, taking repeated questions from the media regarding Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder and Frazier's resolute stance that Ponder is, and will be, Minnesota's starter. Before standing up and explaining his and the team's position on Ponder, Frazier had already thought long and hard about a vastly...

Frazier admits risks of sticking with Ponder

Leslie Frazier said he believes in Christian Ponder as the Vikings’ best option at quarterback, for now and for developing long-term. Meanwhile, he said his approach at quarterback is different than other positions.

Harvin, Allen still dealing with lingering injuries

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. The Minnesota Vikings are feeling the sting of two straight key losses on the road in the NFC North, but at least Sunday didn't add injury to the insult. Minnesota coach Leslie Frazier said Monday that he didn't have any new news to add regarding injured receiver Percy Harvin, who missed his third straight game Sunday, a 23-14 loss at Green Bay. Frazier...

Frazier sticking with Ponder despite struggles

By Andrew Gruman FOXSportsWisconsin.com GREEN BAY, Wis. When Vikings coach Leslie Frazier approached a dejected Christian Ponder at his locker just moments after the young quarterback struggled yet again, it wasn't to make a change. Instead, Frazier's intentions were to let Ponder know that he stood by him and won't be changing quarterbacks despite another dismal showing...
NFL Forum Discussions
Can't wait SPLASH MESSAGE! 2 days!
4 replies, 2 days ago
1st win 2013!
2 replies, 2 days ago
Thank you kinmosa and watamote!
4 replies, 2 days ago
Rodgers out 3-6 weeks?
4 replies, 2 days ago
Thank you Vikes!
4 replies, 2 days ago
Thank you 5 years!!!!!
2 replies, 2 days ago
Home Sweet Home!
2 replies, 2 days ago
NFL on NHK next week
2 replies, 2 days ago
Pro Bowl draft
2 replies, 2 days ago
We are NFC EAST Champion!!!!!!!!!!
2 replies, 2 days ago
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.