1. Can Bears, Packers Turn Around Struggling Run Games During Division Showdown?

    Two of the NFL 's most prolific offenses from a year ago have been stuck in neutral to start 2014, and the struggles both have had running the football are at least partly to blame...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 11 months ago 5,515 reads 14 comments

  2. Best to Temper Early Expectations for Teddy Bridgewater as Vikings Starter

    This wasn't part of the Minnesota Vikings ' plan for rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater 's first ever start. Down a once-in-a-generation talent at running back. Without the safety valve of an athletic, pass-catching tight end...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 11 months ago 8,821 reads 23 comments

  3. Missed Throws and Missed Receivers Highlight Aaron Rodgers' Early Struggles

    After years of Aaron Rodgers making the most difficult position in sports look so easy, it can be jarring to the optics when the Green Bay Packers quarterback goes through a taxing period like he has to start the 2014 season...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 11 months ago 8,574 reads 27 comments

  4. Chicago Bears' Opportunistic Defense Making Up for Injuries, Shortcomings

    The product hasn't always been aesthetically pleasing, but the opportunistic nature of the Chicago Bears defense has been good enough to help overcome a growing number of injuries ...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 11 months ago 4,828 reads 12 comments

  5. Teddy Bridgewater's Vikings Debut Provides Encouraging Signs for Future

    Despite being thrust into one of the most inhospitable environments in the NFL , Minnesota Vikings rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater handled himself just fine—showing ...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 11 months ago 6,730 reads 7 comments

  6. Dominant Lions Defense Sends Message to Packers, NFC North

    Bullied by Aaron Rodgers for so many years and during so many losses, the Detroit Lions defense turned the tables and became the oppressor Sunday afternoon during a suffocating 19-7 win over the Green Bay Packers ...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 11 months ago 17,342 reads 169 comments

  7. Lions CB Darius Slay Key vs. Packers' Aaron Rodgers, Jordy Nelson

    The Detroit Lions must know that finally winning the NFC North will likely require beating a healthy Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers . Week 3 of the young 2014 season provides that opportunity...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 4,430 reads 28 comments

  8. Forging a New Identity for the Minnesota Vikings Sans Adrian Peterson

    Adrian Peterson has been the unassailable face of the Minnesota Vikings during the vast majority of his eight-year NFL career...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 6,690 reads 11 comments

  9. The Reasons Behind Eddie Lacy's Slow Start for the Packers in 2014

    Back in late August, Green Bay Packers running backs coach Sam Gash expressed his belief that Eddie Lacy —the NFL 's Offensive Rookie of the Year last season—could lead the league in rushing yards in 2014...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 32,182 reads 55 comments

  10. Charles Tillman Injury Puts Spotlight on Kyle Fuller to Save Bears Secondary

    A season ago, the loss of cornerback Charles Tillman to a torn right triceps played a major role in the Chicago Bears ' historic slide on defense...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 19,910 reads 36 comments

  11. Chicago Bears May Have Found Defensive Spark to Contend with NFC Heavyweights

    The Chicago Bears pulled off one of the more improbable wins of the young 2014 season, coming back from 17 points down in the first half to beat the San Francisco 49ers on the road for the first time since 1985...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 38,216 reads 111 comments

  12. Despite Matt Cassel's Horrific Showing It's Still Not Time for Teddy Bridgewater

    If those in attendance at TCF Bank Stadium on Sunday had their way, the Minnesota Vikings would be pulling quarterback Matt Cassel and starting rookie Teddy Bridgewater immediately...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 7,887 reads 64 comments

  13. Previewing NFC North Matchups for NFL Week 2 Action

    Just as everyone expected, the NFC North standings after one week in 2014 are an inverse of the final standings in 2013...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 250 reads 0 comments

  14. Packers Defense Must Resolve Issues Against the Run Before Showdown with Jets

    The Green Bay Packers ' floundering run defense has some serious issues to resolve before welcoming the New York Jets —and the NFL 's No. 1 rushing offense—to Lambeau Field in Week 2...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 3,828 reads 22 comments

  15. Why the Vikings Should Be Excited About Anthony Barr's Season Debut

    While the Minnesota Vikings ' rookie quarterback sat on the bench Sunday in St. Louis, the team's other first-round pick—linebacker Anthony Barr—was busy putting together what can only be considered an illuminating NFL debut...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 17,868 reads 27 comments

  16. Safe, Smart Matthew Stafford Is a Winning Recipe for the Detroit Lions

    The growth of quarterback Matthew Stafford represented the fundamental divergence between the Detroit Lions ' Week 16 loss to the New York Giants in 2013 and the team's season-opening win over the same Giants club Monday night...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 17,911 reads 78 comments

  17. Same-Old Jay Cutler Won't Cut It for the 2014 Chicago Bears

    Rewind to the night of Sept. 14, 2012. Moments after helping the Green Bay Packers trounce the Chicago Bears during a prime-time contest at Lambeau Field, veteran cornerback ...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 12,559 reads 85 comments

  18. Familiar Horrors Haunt Cutler, Bears in Discouraging Season-Opening Loss

    The horrors that haunted the Chicago Bears ' season-opening loss to the Buffalo Bills should feel all too familiar in the Windy City...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 33,805 reads 217 comments

  19. What Went Wrong for the Green Bay Packers Against Seattle in the Opener?

    A number of mental mistakes, personnel deficiencies and errors forced by the still hungry and confident defending champions led directly to the Seattle Seahawks ' 36-16 rout of the Green Bay Packers during Thursday night's season opener...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 12,433 reads 134 comments

  20. Packers' Blowout Opening Loss Proves Green Bay Remains Well Behind NFC Elite

    Any doubt about the sizable gap remaining between the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks was all but eliminated during Thursday night's regular-season opener...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 29,527 reads 278 comments

  21. Quarterbacks Creating off Broken Plays Key for Both Packers, Seahawks in Opener

    Neither the Green Bay Packers nor the Seattle Seahawks will feel supremely confident in their ability to keep the pass rush off their quarterback during Thursday night's NFL regular-season opener...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 11,110 reads 125 comments

  22. No. 16 Best City to Be a Sports Fan: Minneapolis

    How much does where you live matter as a sports fan? The short answer is: It depends. If you're an Alabama football fan, there's no better place to live than Tuscaloosa. If you're a Red Sox fan, there's no worse place to live than New York City...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 12 months ago 9,066 reads 28 comments

  23. Biggest Preseason Takeaways from the NFC North

    The preseason is finally over, and less than a week from Friday, the Green Bay Packers will travel to Seattle for the NFL 's regular-season opener. Meaningful football is almost here...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 1 year ago 38,637 reads 273 comments

  24. Teddy Bridgewater Is Backup for Now, but Looks Ready to Play Sooner Than Later

    Minnesota Vikings rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater will begin his NFL career as the backup to veteran Matt Cassel, but a preseason's worth of work has provided enough evidence to suggest Bridgewater is ready to play in the NFL right now...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 1 year ago 19,502 reads 49 comments

  25. Should the Minnesota Vikings Be Concerned with LT Matt Kalil?

    A few poor plays from Minnesota Vikings left tackle Matt Kalil this preseason has some sounding the alarms and others attempting to extinguish the fire of criticism. The reality of the situation likely falls somewhere in between the two sides...

    Zach Kruse Written by Zach Kruse about 1 year ago 17,451 reads 28 comments