The Minnesota Vikings are heading into the season with high expectations after last season’s division title.
The Vikings offense ranked 7th in the NFL in yards and 8th in points last season in the first year of the Kevin O’Connell regime. This season will be the second with him calling the plays – the first time the franchise has the same play caller in consecutive seasons since 2016.
“You don’t have to learn a new offense or learn a new system,” Vikings fullback C.J. Ham said. “You can just hit the ground running refreshed, you know, refresh things and then just go. I think that’s really made us be able to come out here and just play fast and just really excel.”
While O’Connell’s background is on the offensive side of the ball, he stresses the importance of all three phases of the game.
“Our head coach obviously was an offensive coach,” Ham said. “But he continues to stress how important it is that our defense is locked in, our special teams and how we all come together, because that’s how you win games in all three phases not just one.”
On the defensive side, the Vikings brought in Brian Flores as the coordinator, and he brings in a tough-nosed style.
“That’s the history of what he does,” Ham said. “It’s very exciting and makes us better as an offense that he’s going to make us better as a team.”
The Vikes are hoping to improve on last season, when they won the NFC North and finished 13-4.
“Our ultimate goal to bring Super Bowl championships to Minnesota,” Vikings President Mark Wilf said. “We feel we’re in a good direction. So that’s how we’re approaching. We have high expectations as always, and we love the direction of this team.”
The Vikings kick off the season against the Bucs at home on Sept. 10.