Season Already Over For St. Croix’s Linval Joseph And The Minnesota Vikings
BEAST MODE: Marshawn Lynch expected to play
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. – The 2015-2016 NFL football season is over for Vikings starting nose tackle Linval Joseph.
Not because of a nagging foot injury that has forced him to miss three out of the last four games.
But because Minnesota plays the resurgent Seattle Seahawks on Sunday.
The defensive goal against the Green Bay Packers in the Vikings 20-13 win two days ago was to keep running back Eddie Lacy from getting his fifth consecutive 100-yard rushing game against them.
Minnesota was able to do that without St. Croix native Joseph, holding Lacy to just 34 yards on 13 carries for an average rush of 2.6 yards.
Sharrif Floyd again filled in admirably for Joseph with Tom Johnson stepping in when the Vikings were in three-technique tackle position.
Floyd finished with six tackles on the day and made tackles from nearly every portion of the field.
Joseph played 65 snaps during the Vikings 49-17 win over the New York Giants on Dec. 27.
Minnesota was expected to win 6-10 games this year under head coach Mike Zimmer. They stand at 11-5 now.
But whether Joseph is healthy enough to play this weekend or not, Pete Carroll’s Seahawks will close out the season definitively on on the Vikings, despite the fact that Minnesota is playing at home.
Seattle demolished arguably the most exciting team in the NFL on Sunday, destroying Arizona 36-6, despite the fact that the Cardinals were favored by seven points.
The Seahawks are expecting running back Marshawn “Beast Mode” Lynch to return in time to play in the wildcard matchup.
“He’s ready to go,” Carroll said. “He’s in the program, going, working, and he’s going to keep doing his workouts here with us today and tomorrow. And Wednesday, we’re going to practice and see how he feels and how far he can take it. He’s worked out in incredibly competitive situations. He, physically, should be ready to go, but now we’ve got to translate it into football and directly to us. I’m not worried about him having any problem with the system or any of that kind of stuff. It’s been a while, but he’ll be fine. So we’ll just see if he can handle it and expect that he will.”
Seattle has been to the Super Bowl the last two years in a row. The Seahawks stomped the Denver Broncos 43-8 in 2014.
And they lost to the New England Patriots on a fluke play in 2015. Their revenge begins at TCF Bank Stadium on Sunday.
The wild-card contest will be the first outdoor playoff game in Minnesota since 1976.
Virgin Islands Free Press prediction: Seattle Seahawks 45, Minnesota Vikings 3.
Whether he plays or not, the season is already over for St. Croix’s Linval Joseph.