Graham enters Sunday's game at Chicago : 0xbt | CryptoManiac

Graham enters Sunday's game at Chicago

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    By zhangzk
    Whether it was earlier in his career at New Orleans or the past few seasons in Seattle Adam Shaheen Jerseys Stitched , two things were common for tight end Jimmy Graham: production and victories.Both are in short supply in his first season with the Green Bay Packers.  with only two touchdown catches and the Packers with a 5-7-1 record."My numbers suck," Graham said Friday. "That's not what it's about, you know? I just want to win games. If I have one catch for 2 yards and we win, I don't care. Obviously, it's not great when you're not helping us win, and that's what I see."Graham, who has played the last two games with a brace to protect a broken thumb, has caught 46 passes for 549 yards. That's second on the team in receptions, and while the production might wind up being better than it was last season for the Seahawks, when he caught 57 passes for 520 yards, Graham also led all NFL tight ends with 10 touchdowns a year ago. With Seattle in 2016, Graham caught 65 passes for 923 yards. With the Saints from 2011 through 2014, he averaged 89 receptions, 1,099 yards and 11.5 touchdowns.While the Packers probably weren't expecting the 32-year-old Graham to duplicate that kind of production, they no doubt were expecting more than a couple touchdowns when they signed him to a three-year, $30 million contract in March.For his part, Graham was expecting to join a championship contender. Instead Youth Kevin White Jerseys , the Packers fired coach Mike McCarthy after a loss to Arizona on Dec. 2 and could be eliminated from the playoff race on Sunday."I've never lost this much, so it's obviously not something I'm used to," Graham said. "I'll never be OK with losing. I love to win. We've got to get back to that. Last week was a great step in the right direction. We've just got to do what we can control and try to keep winning."For the Packers to win back-to-back games for the first time this season, they will have to contain Chicago's ferocious defense. The Bears enter the game ranked third in points allowed and first in takeaways. Chicago linebacker Khalil Mack has 10 sacks and six forced fumbles. Along with catching the ball, Graham will be part of the plan to keep Mack away from quarterback Aaron Rodgers."In this offseason, the tight end does a lot of stuff," Graham said. "I've got a lot of responsibilities 鈥?just not running routes and out here catching the ball like a receiver. That's just how it is. I'm just trying to do my job and do what I'm told. . Obviously, we're going to play a great defense that's got a great rush. I'll be a part of stopping that rush, and that's just how it is."Graham caught only two passes for 8 yards in the season-opening victory over Chicago. He caught eight passes in the loss to the Cardinals but had only two receptions for 13 yards last week against Atlanta. He had a chance for a 57-yard touchdown reception but couldn't make the play. The brace, he admitted, has been limiting."You don't want to shatter your thumb," Graham said. "That's not great, but it is what it is."Notes: RT Bryan Bulaga, who spent most of the first matchup against Chicago blocking Mack, is doubtful with a knee injury. That means Jason Spriggs is in line for his second consecutive start. ... CB Bashaud Breeland (groin/personal reasons) and defensive tackle Kenny Clark (elbow) are questionable. Due to the death of a close friend, Breeland was away from the team on Wednesday and Thursday, according to interim coach Joe Philbin. For the first time since I took over writing these game previews a couple of years ago, I don’t have to write a short eulogy on the season and include phrases like ‘last Bears game until September’ or ‘enjoy it because a long offseason will start Monday.’That’s right Kevin White Jerseys Stitched , there will be a postseason run to talk about. The stress level will be higher and there will be no guarantee of a next week, but this will be fun. But there is still the matter of Sunday’s game to talk about. The Vikings are playing for their own playoff life and the Bears have seeding implications at play.There’s a lot of will-they, won’t-they talk surrounding the Bears as far as how hard the team will play, or how much the starters will play. It’s tough to say, but it sounds like there’s a good chance that we’ll see the starters for at least a half of the game.Minnesota VikingsSB Nation site: Daily NorsemanGame day/time/TV: Sunday, 3:25 p.m. CT, FOXRecord: 8-6-1Last week: 27-9 win over DetroitBears all-time record against: 53-60-2 (including postseason)Historical match ups: The last time the Bears won in Minnesota, it was also the last game of the season. Back in Week 17 of 2011, Josh McCown started for the injured Jay Cutler and the ineffective Caleb Hanie. Just weeks after patrolling the sideline of a high school as a coach, he led the Bears from down 10-0 early to hit Roy Williams for a touchdown.A Charles Tillman pick six and a Robbie Gould field goal were all the Bears needed to eek out a 17-13 win.Last meeting: Just over a month ago, on Sunday Night Football, fans were talking about the Bears finally having their shot at a winning football team and a shot to establish themselves as a true contending playoff team. They beat the Vikings 25-20, but it wasn’t even that close.The Vikings scored twice after the Bears were already up 22-6 to get it close.Offense: Minnesota enters Week 17 with 16th ranked offense in terms of points and 17th in terms of yards. Their passing offense ranks 10th in passing yards and fifth in attempts, led by Kirk Cousins (70.7 pct. cmp./4,166 yds./29 TD/10 INT) throwing to dangerous weapons like Adam Thielen (110 rec./1,335 yds./9 TD), Stefon Diggs (94/974/8) and Aldrick Robinson (17/231/5).They account for 22 of Cousins’ 29 TD passes, the others belong to TE Kyle Rudolph (60/615/4) Youth Bennie Fowler Jerseys , WR Laquon Treadwell (34/295/1) and RB Dalvin Cook (36/284/2).Speaking of Cook, he is arguably their best offensive weapon, but certainly their most versatile. The Vikings rank 30th in rushing yards, 27th in rushing TDs and 26th in attempts, but Cook is an effective back when he’s healthy.His numbers (122 att./576 yds./2 TD) work out to 4.7 yards per carry and his 5.4 yards per touch are a testament to his versatile game.He actually is second on the team in rushing to Latavius Murray (138/560/6) but that’s mostly due to missing five games.Defense: The Vikings defense is fierce, every bit as good as the Bears. They come in ranked seventh in points allowed and third in yards allowed. They rank third in pass yards allowed, first in touchdown passes allowed but are 16th in interceptions.Their rushing defense ranks 11th in yards allowed and sixth in touchdowns allowed.Overall they rank 15th in terms of turnovers with 20, so average, which is surprising with the playmakers thay have and their unit ranks overall.Up front they boast Danielle Hunter (14.5 sacks/21 TFL/19 QBH), Everson Griffin (5.5 sk./5 TFL/13 QBH), Sheldon Richardson (4.5 sk./6 TFL/16 QBH) and their version of Eddie Goldman in Linval Joseph (1 sk/4 TFL/3QBH/1 FF).Their linebackers are good too with Anthony Barr (3 sk./2 PD/1 FF/8 TFL) and Eric Kendricks (108 tkl/3 TFL/2 INT/7 PD/1 FF) making plays all over the place.The secondary is no slouch either with S Harrison Smith (3 INT/6 PD/1 FF/8 TFL), Trae Waynes (8 PD/1 INT), Xavier Rhodes (7 PD/1 INT), Mackensie Alexander (9 PD/4 sk./7 TFL) and Anthony Harris (3 INT/6 PD) all making plays.They have 16 players with at least half a sack, a testament to the amount of different looks and blitzes they like to throw at their opponents.Injury report: The Vikings listed eight players on their Wednesday injury report:Full participation: LB Anthony Barr (shoulder), TE David Morgan (knee)Limited: FB C.J. Ham (elbow), DT Linval Joseph (knee), LB Eric Kendricks (hamstring) Bennie Fowler Jerseys Stitched , G Mike Remmers (low back), CB Xavier Rhodes (groin), Marcus Sherels (foot)Key match ups: The front seven against Mitch Trubisky looms large here, will Trubisky be able to recognize where the pressure will come from while keeping his eyes downfield and find where the open receiver is?Picking apart the tough secondary of the Vikings will be difficult, Trubisky struggled during the first meeting, throwing two picks and leading the offense to just one touchdown. What did he learn from that game?On defense, I think the match up is the Bears’ front four getting pressure on Kirk Cousins is the biggest key. Sure, I think that shutting down Dalvin Cook is important because he has the speed and the skillset to burn the defense, but Cousins makes the whole thing work.Cousins’ struggles against winning teams and big moments is well documented. If the Bears can rattle him, like they did in the first game, then he should turn the ball over.What to watch for: Playoff seeding; will the Bears truly go all out to keep a division rival out of the postseason or will they simply just do enough to put up a fight in the first half and then cruise in the second?There are some really intriguing things at play.Key stats: Cousins’ pass attempts have dropped a bit since the team fired John DeFilippo, going from 37.4 attempts per game to 24.5The Vikings have also gotten Murray and Cook a combined 29.5 rushing attempts per game since changing coordinators. The Vikings are 0-4-1 when they lose the turnover margin, they’ve only won the turn over margin four timesKirk Cousins is number two in the NFL with three pick sixes thrown, just one behind Josh RosenCousins is also tied for fourth with nine fumbles this yearThe pick: Vikings 28, Bears 23 - Ultimately, I don’t think many Bears starters will finish this game and I think the Vikings pull it out in the end to make the playoffs. To see my analysis of the game against the spread and the total, click here to read my piece on Sports Bet Collective.What do you think the Bears need to do to win Sunday? Will they try?