Posted by ESPN.com’s Kevin Seifert
I’ll just say it straight up: I need to make a correction to one of the observations I made during Minnesota’s 27-13 victory Sunday at Detroit.
Those of you who were watching the game on television probably noticed it immediately: Vikings quarterback Tarvaris Jackson lined up as an upback, NOT a gunner, during a second-quarter punt. I questioned the intent of using Jackson on a punt coverage team, but if you watch a replay -- which I finally got around to Monday night -- you can clearly see Jackson faking a direct snap and then faking a throw. Essentially, it was a (fake) fake punt.
I was juggling too many things in the press box at the time and obviously didn’t see the play clearly enough to write about, let alone make a comment. That doesn’t happen very often, and I wish I had taken a minute to wonder if it was really possible that a backup quarterback with a history of injuries was being used as a gunner on punt coverage. Live and learn. But as we’ve discussed before, I’d rather point out my mistakes than hope you never catch them. (Because I know you will.)
End mea culpa. Now, let’s get to our morning spin around the division:
The Vikings are looking for reasons to explain why they’ve faced halftime deficits in each of their first two games, writes Chip Scoggins of the Star Tribune.
Detroit managed to do enough damage to Minnesota’s vaunted run defense that the Vikings were forced to move from Cover 2 to eight men in the box, writes Sean Jensen of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
Coaches were pleased with Chicago linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer’s performance Sunday, writes Brad Biggs of the Chicago Sun-Times, and as of now are unlikely to pursue a veteran like Derrick Brooks as a long-term replacement for the injured Brian Urlacher.
Bears quarterback Jay Cutler completed nine of 11 passes against Pittsburgh’s blitz, writes Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune.
Tom Pelissero of the Green Bay Press-Gazette breaks down the Packers’ protection schemes Sunday against Cincinnati, noting they used six or seven blockers on 30 of 45 passing plays.
Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel sounds the alarm: “If the Green Bay Packers don't solve their pass protection problem very soon, their season could drop out from under them.”
Detroit coach Jim Schwartz has no plans to change quarterbacks, writes Nicholas J. Cotsonika of the Detroit Free Press.
Michael Rosenberg of the Free Press: “The Lions host the Washington Redskins this week, and this is a little different from most of the Lions' games because -- you'll never believe this -- they can actually win.”