show episodes
 
The Zone Coverage Football Machine is a weekly, in-depth Minnesota Vikings discussion that gives you locker room insights and on-field analysis from professional beat writers. Host Sam Ekstrom has been on the Vikings beat for Zone Coverage since 2014. Arif Hasan has covered the Vikings for Zone Coverage and The Athletic and brings an analytical slant. Luke Inman is Zone Coverage's resident draft and film guru. Together, they give you the most informed Vikings speculation you'll find anywhere.
 
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show series
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan team up for their final Football Machine. As Sam moves on to a new opportunity, the Football Machine is appreciative for your years of loyal listenership. What a fun ride. -Explaining the goodbye -Stafford traded; is Cousins next?! -Why the delay on promoting Klint Kubiak? -Super Bowl Jeopardy w/ Giles Ferrell -Super Bowl…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by Zone Coverage contributor Chris Schad to discuss the conference title games and the latest with the Vikings: -How bad was Matt LaFleur's fourth down decision? -What is Aaron Rodgers' future? -Bills-Chiefs takeaways -Kyle Rudolph's controversial comments -Minnesota's salary-cap management -The Hall of Fame ca…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan discuss the latest with the Purple and the NFL playoffs: -What was compelling about the divisional round? -Who will neutral fans be cheering for in Sunday's Bucs-Packers game? -Identifying free agent targets at guard, defensive tackle, receiver and corner -Checking in on former Vikings -Barr vs. Wilson -Championship round…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan discuss the latest with the Minnesota Vikings and National Football League: -George Paton takes a job with the Denver Broncos. What is the impact on the Vikings? -Best moments of Wild Card weekend: Colts-Bills, Heinicke, Nickelodeon -Takeaways on Devonta Smith, Justin Fields and Mac Jones from the National Championship -T…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by Luke Braun to start discussing the Minnesota Vikings offseason: -Who were the Week 17 winners and losers? -Are the in-house candidates good replacements for Gary Kubiak? Outside hires? -What about replacing Marwan Maalouf? -How inaccurate were our preseason predictions? -Did Kirk Cousins improve his QB rank …
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier react to the Vikings' final game, a 37-35 win in Detroit: -It was the offensive gameplan they should've had all season: Embrace shootouts -Justin Jefferson set the rookie yardage record, but his season still wasn't as impressive as rookie Randy Moss -Are defensive injuries a valid excuse for the record? -How will holes …
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by Chris Schad to break down the latest with the Minnesota Vikings: -What should their New Year's resolutions be? -Does Mike Zimmer have a low ceiling as a coach? -What is the percentage chance that certain key players return? -What odd decisions will the Vikings make in the offseason?…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier discuss the Vikings' 52-33 loss on Christmas Day and what happens next as the offseason nears: -Mike Zimmer calls out his "bad defense" -A deep dive into Ernie Nevers, the 1920s football player whose record Alvin Kamara tied -The one area where the offense can realistically upgrade -Has Kirk Cousins been more fiery this…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan discuss the latest with the Minnesota Vikings: -What are their memories of the two Vikings' playoff wins over the Saints, and what made them special for fans? -Nothing or Something: Justin Jefferson's hot mic moment? Dan Bailey's 5-for-5 day? Mitch Trubisky's Vikings dominance? -Which contracts should the Vikings shed (or…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier dissect the latest Vikings loss that likely eliminates them from playoff contention: -Should the offense be held to a higher standard since they have more veterans? -The play-calling never gave the offense a chance to be explosive -Can we expect the defense to improve next year? -What to make of the end-of-game drives b…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan discuss the latest with the Minnesota Vikings: -Was it correct to hang onto Dan Bailey after his four misses? -Does Mitch Trubisky give the Bears a better chance to win? -Why are the Vikings so slow-tempo on offense? -Is Kirk Cousins more mobile? -Could Justin Jefferson get fed up with the offense like Stefon Diggs? -The …
 
Sam Ekstrom and Chris Schad react to Sunday's 26-14 loss at Tampa Bay. They discuss the following: -Dan Bailey misses four kicks. Is there any case to keep him around? -Kirk Cousins wasn't elite, but he also wasn't the reason the Vikings lost -Dalvin Cook's 100-yard game was wasted -Three controversial calls. Were they correct? -Why won't the Vikin…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by Purple Insider's Matthew Coller to discuss the latest with the Minnesota Vikings: -What are the lasting takeaways from the Jaguars game? -Is this still an upper echelon offense despite some of the mistakes? -Letter grades for Gary Kubiak, Mike Zimmer and Marwan Maalouf -What happened to Holton Hill? -The tig…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier react to the Vikings' 27-24 overtime win against Jacksonville: -Tom missed overtime because his TV switched to the Packers -The last-minute defensive meltdown makes the game look far worse -Why isn't Dalvin Cook getting any relief? -The defense still deserves a hat tip for the takeaways -Special teams was dismal again, …
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by guest Luke Braun to discuss the latest with the Minnesota Vikings: -Praise and malaise from the win over the Panthers -Debate over the Vikings' clock management strategies -Is Dalvin Cook going to get worn down? -What do the Jaguars do well? -Who is in control of the NFC? -Week 13 picks against the spread…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier discuss the Vikings' dramatic 28-27 win over Carolina: -Do you like zany football? -Chad Beebe and Bisi Johnson emerge -Kirk Cousins proves he can carry a team to victory -The Vikings have yet to play a good 60-minute game -The defensive line needs a playmaker to emerge -Playoff scenarios…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by Chris Schad to discuss the latest with the Vikings: -Does Kirk Cousins deserve any heat for the Vikings' latest loss? -What former Vikings defensive player would be most useful on this year's defense? -What will happen if Adam Thielen misses the Panthers game? -Would you want the 2020 version of Teddy Bridge…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier react to Sunday's 31-28 Vikings loss: -The offense deserves some heat, too -Dalvin Cook is taking some serious punishment -CeeDee Lamb and Justin Jefferson are going to be fun to watch for years to come -What happened to the defense? -Special teams was negative again -Do the Vikings still have a chance at the playoffs?…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by guest Eric Thompson to discuss the latest with the Vikings. -"Woos and Boos" from Monday's win against the Bears -Could the Vikings make a change at special teams coordinator? And how will special teams screw up the end of their season? -How do the Ngakoue and Diggs trades look in retrospect? -Where will Cam…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier react to the Vikings' 19-13 win over Chicago: -It was ugly for the Vikings, but imagine being a Bears fan -Minnesota hung tough to overcome obstacles -Justin Jefferson is legit -Mike Zimmer dialed up well-timed blitzes against a hapless Nick Foles -Could the Vikings make a change at special teams? -What's up next for th…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by guest Luke Braun to discuss the latest with the Minnesota Vikings: -What has led to Dalvin Cook's unreal surge? -What defensive adjustments have been made to right the defense? -Halfway superlatives: Biggest surprise, biggest disappointment, worst coaching move, Cousins' best throw -Would you prefer the Viki…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier react to Minnesota's 34-20 over Detroit. -Dalvin Cook rushes for over 200 yards -There are some serious 2012 vibes to the current offense -Mike Zimmer has kept things steady throughout the rocky season -The Vikings could easily jump to the 8-seed soon -What awaits in Chicago on Monday?…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by Zone Coverage contributor Chris Schad to discuss the latest with the Vikings: -Which backup quarterback will torch the Vikings if Matthew Stafford misses Sunday's game? -Was the Vikings' winning formula on Sunday sustainable? -What more can Dalvin do? -How tough it will be for Dalvin to reach Adrian Peterson…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier discuss the Vikings' 28-22 win over the Packers. -Are the Vikings truly bad enough to tank for a top quarterback? -What will happen at the trade deadline? -What was the most surprising part of Sunday's victory? -Tom plays Monday Morning Quarterback on two big coaching moves -Dalvin Cook v. Adrian Peterson?…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan give their latest takes on the state of the Minnesota Vikings: -Did the Vikings get fair return for the Yannick Ngakoue trade? -Does Danielle Hunter deserve a raise? -What is the value of the Vikings' top assets? -What teams intrigued you during the bye week? -Week 8 picks against the spread…
 
Sam Ekstrom is joined by guest hosts Tom Schreier and Eric Thompson (Daily Norseman) to discuss what the Vikings should do after their 1-5 start: -Which assets are most/least tradeable at the deadline? -What does the future hold for Mike Zimmer and Rick Spielman? -Can the Vikings get any younger with their lineup? -Should Minnesota kick the tires o…
 
Sam Ekstrom, Arif Hasan and Luke Inman discuss the latest in Vikings football. Topics include: -Putting a bow on the Seattle Seahawks game -Were you satisfied with Kirk Cousins' performance? -How should the OL be constructed to maximize development? -Are the Vikings underrated based on underlying analytics? -Week 6 picks against-the-spread…
 
Luke Inman and Sam Ekstrom react to the craziness that occurred Sunday night in Seattle as the Vikings lose 27-26: -What should we make of Mike Zimmer's 4th and 1 decision? -Russell Wilson's final drive -Zimmer's two-point conversion decisions -The Vikings' third-quarter meltdown -Dalvin Cook's injury -Winners and losers on both sides of the ball…
 
Sam Ekstrom, Luke Inman and Arif Hasan discuss the latest with the Minnesota Vikings. Topics include: -Houston fires Bill O'Brien after losing to the Vikings. Is Pete Carroll next?!? -Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen are the league's top two receivers on PFF. How does Jefferson's skillset stack up against Stefon Diggs'? -When will Dan Chisena reco…
 
Sam Ekstrom, Luke Inman and Arif Hasan discuss the latest in Vikings football. Topics include: -How does the 2020 season compare to 2010? -How can the defense realistically improve this year? -What offseason moves should be most second-guessed? -Which 0-3 teams are worst off? -Do the Vikings have any trade candidates at the deadline? -Week 4 picks …
 
Sam Ekstrom and Luke Inman react to Minnesota's loss to Tennessee, which sends them to an 0-3 start: -Do the Vikings lack the talent to win games? -The Vikings fooled us all with their irrational confidence in themselves this offseason. -Is tanking realistic or likely? -The offensive line continues to falter -Justin Jefferson's huge game…
 
Sam Ekstrom is joined by The Athletic's Arif Hasan to discuss the latest in Vikings football. Topics include: -What are the symptoms of the team's 0-2 start and how can they be fixed? -What can Kirk Cousins' do better, and are the safeties his fault? -Is Gary Kubiak to blame at all? -What impact will Anthony Barr's absence have? -What challenges do…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Tom Schreier react to Minnesota's second straight blowout loss: -Did the Vikings overestimate their ability to avoid a rebuild? -What's up with Cousins? -When will Hunter rejoin and Ngakoue hit his stride, if ever? -What solutions are there on offense? -What challenges does Tennessee present in Week 3?…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan are joined by Locked On Vikings host Luke Braun to discuss Week 1 and look ahead to Week 2. Topics include: -Who were the biggest scapegoats in Week 1 in the Vikings' loss to the Packers? Secondary or pass rush? -What was the game's turning point? -Arif vs. Luke in Vikings-lose-to-the-Colts trivia -Is Philip Rivers washed…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Luke Inman react to Minnesota's 43-34 Week 1 loss. -How weird was the viewing experience inside the stadium without fans? -What was the game's turning point? -How concerning were the pass rush and secondary? -Kirk Cousins didn't make big plays when it mattered. -Time to panic about the lack of rookie impact?…
 
One of The Draft Rap host Luke Inman's favorite yearly guests stops by to scan the entire NFL and go division-by-division to preview what is sure to be one of the wackiest seasons ever to be played for a bevy of reasons. CBS Sports' Pete Prisco has covered the NFL for over 30 years and lays out his forecast for some of the biggest storylines of the…
 
Sam Ekstrom, Arif Hasan and Luke Inman preview the Vikings' first game of the season against the Green Bay Packers. Topics include: -Danielle Hunter officially moved to the IR. What is the impact? -How will the Vikings handle their practice squad callups? -The guys make their official pre-season predictions -Week 1 gambling picks against the spread…
 
Sam Ekstrom, Arif Hasan and Luke Inman discuss a big week of Minnesota Vikings news: -Kirk Cousins' controversial mask comments -Riley Reiff restructuring his contract to stay in Minnesota -Does Yannick Ngakoue give the Vikings the best DE tandem in the league? -Is Alexander Hollins Mr. Mankato? -What stats will former Vikings have this year?…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Luke Inman put together an emergency podcast on the breaking news that the Minnesota Vikings acquired DE Yannick Ngakoue from the Jacksonville Jaguars. -How talented is Ngakoue? -How does it change the Vikings' rotation? -What does it mean for Ifeadi Odenigbo? -Where will the money come from?…
 
Sam Ekstrom, Arif Hasan and Luke Inman convene for another Zone Coverage Football Machine, covering the Vikings and the NFL. Topics include: -The Vikings announce no fans for at least the first two games. How will it affect the betting line? -Eddie Yarbrough trivia -What should be the panic level over Danielle Hunter's mysterious injury? -Greater T…
 
Former New York Jets cornerback Eric Crocker stops by The Draft Rap studio to discuss the current training camp buzz along with his early picks to represent the NFC in the 2020 Super Bowl. Host Luke Inman has Crocker list his cornerback superlatives from best press to fastest cover man in the league. Plus, the duo take a deep dive into the Minnesot…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Luke Inman discuss the latest from Vikings training camp, including: -False positives send eight Vikings into quarantine -Reasons why it's been a fairly uneventful camp for the Vikings -Who will be the surprise cuts? -How are the young corners developing? -Should the Vikings have added some veterans late in free agency?…
 
Sam Ekstrom, Arif Hasan and Luke Inman join to discuss what they've learned so far at Vikings training camp. Topics include: -Is the defensive line a bigger concern than we expected? -Are the starting guard candidates good enough? -Which unheralded rookies (if any) have stood out? -How are the top four draft picks looking, and which rookie corner w…
 
Sam Ekstrom, Luke Inman and Arif Hasan are back to discuss the latest with the National Football League and the Minnesota Vikings. Topics include: -What are the ripple effects of college football postponing until the spring? -What do we want to see from the Vikings at the first open training camp practices? -What will the depth chart be at wide rec…
 
Offensive line guru Brandon Thorn jumps in The Draft Rap studio to breakdown the Minnesota Vikings landscape in the trenches and where he has the unit ranked coming into the 2020 NFL season. Thorn helps host Luke Inman dissect the NFC North's best up and coming interior lineman like Garrett Bradbury, Elgton Jenkins and Frank Ragnow along with ranki…
 
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan discuss the latest in Vikings football. Topics include: -The trade for P.J. Hall, followed by Hall's failed physical and the trade reversal -Gary Kubiak made some interesting comments about the offensive line depth chart -Rick Spielman signed an extension. How will he be remembered? -Ranking the Vikings position groups to…
 
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