Vikings' Mike Zimmer 'not that discouraged' by play of LT Matt Kalil

Thursday September 25th, 2014

Minnesota Vikings left tackle Matt Kalil has been criticized for the amount of pressure he has allowed through the first three games of the season, but head coach Mike Zimmer told reporters he is "not that discouraged" about the way Kalil has played.

Kalil, who was the fourth overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, has been beaten for three sacks in his past two games.

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From the Star Tribune:

“For 93 percent of the game, he plays pretty good. But unfortunately, the three or four bad plays he has show up and [fans and media] get on him,” Zimmer said Wednesday. “So I’m not that discouraged as everybody else is. We’ll just try to get those four bad plays out of there and keep going.”

“I know everybody’s on this Kalil kick,” he said. “I think it’s easy to see some of those things on TV or sitting in the press box or on the field, guys get beat. It’s easy to see. We’ve had corners get beat. We’ve had linebackers get beat. We’ve had guards get beat. But everybody’s on this Kalil kick.”

The Star Tribune notes that Kalil has allowed 12 quarterback pressures in the past two weeks, which is more than any other NFL offensive lineman.

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On Wednesday, the Vikings placed quarterback Matt Cassel on injured reserve. He will miss the rest of the season after he broke his foot against the Saints in Week 3.  

In three games this season, Cassel was 41-of-71 for 425 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions.

Rookie Teddy Bridgewater, the No. 32 pick in the 2014 draft, will be the team's new starter. After Cassel left Sunday's game, Bridgewater completed 12-of-20 passes for 150 yards.

The Vikings are 1-2 this season. They host the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.

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- Sarah Barshop

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