Childress hears ‘clamoring' for deep passes

Vikings coach Brad Childress isn't concerned about Brett Favre's arm strength or health, but he hears what he called a "clamoring" for more deep passes in the offense. He explains.

Brad Childress hears what he calls a "clamoring" for more deep passes from the Vikings offense.

Brett Favre completed 23 of 27 passes but had only 155 yards. That's not something that concerns Childress, who is happy to be 2-0 to start the season.

"I always find it interesting when you win and people are going to tell you how you should win," Childress said. "Anybody that doesn't get how hard it is to win a game in this league, it's a hard thing to do. It's hard. It's harder yet to go on the road and do it."

But the topic of the day was Brett Favre and the Vikings offense not having a pass play go for more than 14 yards – and the 14-yarder came on Tarvaris Jackson's only pass of the game. While Childress said that, in fact, long passes can be completed by the West Coast offense, by nature it calls for more efficiency than risk from the quarterback.

"West Coast offense, if you could describe it, would be high completion percentage, low interception percentage – those two things," Childress said. "And it is typically a run-after-catch offense. Used to be termed extended handoff and extended sweep. But with that said, you typically are reading high to low. You're typically looking to see, are they going to give you something up the field and then you're bringing it down to the intermediate to the check down."

So far, Favre has thrown for a 110 yards against the Cleveland Browns' 14th-ranked pass defense from 2008 and 155 yards against the Detroit Lions' 27th-ranked pass defense from last year. However, it should be noted that both of those teams are under new coaching staffs this year.

The Vikings want some deep passes to help open up the running game even more, but will they do that with a greater risk for interceptions? Childress said Favre is operating well within the offense that he has played for 16 years.

"I think he's playing within the confines, if you will, if it is confining, if that's the right word. He is playing the way we need him to play to win," Childress said. "Are we looking for balls up the field? We are. We are looking for balls up the field, we just haven't had that many yet. We've had throws up the field, but those throws are long foul balls until they are completed down the field, so he's being efficient with it. I guess you could talk to him about where he's at. But he's being very efficient within the scope of things."

In the meantime, Childress will take the wins however he can get them and be amused by those who believe the wins should happen a different way.

"I think that's great. I'm glad those people have those high expectations or would like to see it done with the Wildcat," Childress said. "It was en vogue. I don't hear it quite as much anymore, you know, because somebody said it's gone the way of the dinosaur. It was just a fad. Until somebody scores a couple times, and then it will be, how come you aren't using the Wildcat?"

But it's doubtful the Wildcat player would be able to throw the ball deep downfield, either.


  • Childress said he doesn't have any reservations about Favre's arm strength. "I don't have one concern. I've seen him throw it long, throw it short," he said. "You know, he does a good job in the strength area. He's strengthened all those muscles. I don't have one concern about his arm, at all."

  • Despite concerns that Favre may have injured his hand or wrist in Sunday's game, Childress said it was simply a bent fingernail that he didn't anticipate would require Favre to be listed on this week's injury report.

  • Childress said in a 60-play game, the idea "pitch count" for Favre might be 20 to 30 throws.

  • Prior to the Monday night game between Indianapolis and Miami, the Vikings were ranked 26th in offense (second rushing and 32nd passing) and fifth on defense (15th against the run and fifth against the pass).

  • Despite all the yardage-based statistics, the Vikings are fourth in points per game, averaging 30.5 per game.

    Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.

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