Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Around the Horns: More calls for Patterson
By Ben Goessling
MINNEAPOLIS -- After Cordarrelle Patterson took the opening kickoff 105 yards for a touchdown on Sunday, it seemed logical he would see more playing time against the Chicago Bears than he did the previous week against the Detroit Lions.
And he did. By a snap.
Patterson got six offensive snaps in the Vikings' 31-30 loss to the Bears, after playing just five in the team's Week 1 loss to the Lions. Coach Leslie Frazier was fairly blunt when he was asked about it on Monday, saying "we're going to get that rectified" before Week 3 against the Cleveland Browns.
That message might have been directed to offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave, as Judd Zulgad of 1500ESPN.com writes. Zulgad says Frazier should be "demanding answers" for why Patterson -- the 29th overall pick in the draft last April -- hasn't been on the field in the Vikings' first two games.
We're going to get into this a little more later today, but Patterson's absence certainly was perplexing after the opening kickoff on Sunday. The Vikings talked when they drafted Patterson about how they could use him in some of the ways they featured Percy Harvin -- on kickoffs, yes, but also on bubble screens that could take advantage of Patterson's speed even before the Vikings felt comfortable enough to use him in more complex passing schemes.
When the Vikings are struggling to finish drives, they could probably do worse than finding Patterson on a screen and letting him try to make people miss in short-yardage situations. But we haven't seen them try that yet, and it sounds like Frazier is among those who wants to see that change.