Personnel Analysis: Week #12 (Special Teams)

The Vikings 42-10 victory at home against the Detroit Lions this past week was easily their most complete game this season. We break down the special teams…

Not a very active day for the Viking kickers.  Well, placekicker Ryan Longwell got lots of action doing extra points and kickoffs.  He was 6-for-6 on the former.  His kickoffs were solid:  0, 5, 2, 1, -2 and -1, with the other being a squibber at the end of the first half.  Longwell also had a tackle on kickoff coverage, which is never really something you’re looking for your kicker to have to do.

Punter Chris Kluwe was 1-for-1 passing as he completed a shuffle pass to Jeff Dugan from field goal formation that resulted in a 27-yard gain.  Kluwe now boasts a passer rating of 118.8.  His lone punt was a 41-yard boot that went into the endzone for a touchback.  Nice job holding for all those extra points though.

Aundrae Allison was the special teams star of the week with a team-record 103-yard kickoff return (that sure looked like about 105 on TV).  Allison made four would-be tackler miss with nifty cuts, moves, acceleration and speed as he took it the distance.  Running back Mewelde Moore made a key block to spring him at the wedge.  He finished with 143 yards on 3 kickoff returns (47.7 avg.) and looks much more natural than Troy Williamson on returns.

Moore gained 10 yards on his lone punt return opportunity.  Two other punts were directed out of bounds, another was downed inside the 20.

The kickoff coverage teams were only so-so as Avion Cason averaged 26.8 on 6 returns, including a long of 35 yards.  The leaders on coverage for the Vikings were Heath Farwell (2 tackles), Eric Frampton (2 tackles), Marcus McCauley (1 tackle), Vinny Ciurciu (1 tackle) and Longwell.  Farwell, who is the team leader on special teams, was actually involved on more than just two tackles.  Frampton has been a solid addition on special teams since joining the Vikings earlier this season.

Punt coverage?  No opportunities (not an altogether bad sign).

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