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in NEUES AUS DEM AUSLAND 09.01.2019 03:34
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For fans of the Minnesota Vikings Authentic Pernell McPhee Jersey , at least the ones old enough to drive, there’s a score to be settled with the New Orleans Saints.

Eight years ago, the last Minnesota team considered a strong Super Bowl contender was on the verge of victory in New Orleans in the NFC championship game despite four earlier turnovers inside the raucous Superdome.

That was until the infamous 12-men-in-the-huddle penalty with 19 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter pushed the Vikings out of field goal range and preceded Brett Favre’s ill-fated throw across his body that was intercepted by Tracy Porter to force overtime and steer the Saints toward the franchise’s only title. The bitterness in Minnesota toward the team in black and gold only increased two years later when an NFL investigation concluded then-New Orleans defensive coordinator Gregg Williams encouraged a bounty system designed to financially reward players for hitting and injuring Favre.

There’s only one player, defensive end Brian Robison, who’s still around from that season, however. That painful stumble at the end of the most important game the Vikings have played in almost two decades doesn’t mean much at all to the guys on the 2017 roster.

”We just have to come out and play our game, regardless of who’s mad at who for whatever reason,” wide receiver Jarius Wright said.

Head coach Mike Zimmer was actually sitting in the seats that evening, with his defensive coordinator duties for Cincinnati on break with the Bengals already eliminated from the playoffs. His son, Adam Zimmer, was an assistant linebackers coach for New Orleans that year.

”I was just sitting there observing. I wasn’t really rooting for anybody or anything like that,” Zimmer said, before revealing his drink of choice on Bourbon Street that day: ”I had some of those hurricanes.”

For these Vikings, the Saints simply represent their first obstacle to being the first team to play in a Super Bowl in its home stadium. They had to wait until the very end of their bye week to find out who they would be facing in the divisional round game, with the Saints topping the Carolina Panthers 31-26 in New Orleans on Sunday night.

”I think they understand the magnitude of where we’re at in the playoffs and that New Orleans is a heck of a football team,” Zimmer said on Monday afternoon Authentic Anthony Averett Jersey , when the Vikings reconvened for preparation.

The Vikings beat the Saints 29-19 in the season opener , when Sam Bradford was their quarterback and Dalvin Cook was the running back for an offense that took full advantage of a young defense trying to get set. The Saints also still had Adrian Peterson in their backfield then, before trading him to the Arizona Cardinals and clearing space for rookie Alvin Kamara to elevate his role next to Mark Ingram.

”From the first time we played them to now, it’s totally different,” Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes said.

For both teams, really. September was so long ago.

”I would expect that they’ve kind of grown into their own identity now,” Saints linebacker Manti Te’o said. ”I don’t expect to see the same team that we saw Week 1, and I know they don’t expect to see the same team they saw in Week 1, too.”

Bradford has resumed practicing, but he likely will remain on injured reserve this week with Teddy Bridgewater backing up Case Keenum at quarterback.

”We’ll just take our time,” Zimmer said of Bradford’s status, ”and see how it goes.”



Joey Votto hit a grand slam and celebrated with a flap, honoring the bird that prolonged his at-bat.

Votto ended a long homer drought with his third career grand slam Tuesday night, powering the Cincinnati Reds to a 9-5 victory that ended the Detroit Tigers‘ longest winning streak in two years.

Votto came to bat with the bases loaded in the third inning of a scoreless game. A black bird wandered between the plate and the pitcher’s mound, prompting Votto to call time so he could try to shoo it away. The bird stayed in the middle of the infield.

”He was in the line of vision and I was going to try to swat it away,” Votto said. ”I was thinking Authentic Russell Bodine Jersey , `Make sure to hit the ball in the air’ and `Don’t hit it on the ground up the middle.’ I was taking care of the bird.”

Votto’s high fly ball to right field off Matthew Boyd (4-5) had just enough to avoid the outstretched glove of Nicholas Castellanos, who reached over the wall and barely missed it. Votto flapped his arms in tribute to the bird when he crossed the plate on his first homer since May 13, ending a 30-game drought.

Votto’s last homer at Great American Ball Park was May 6. He has seven homers after hitting 36 last season, one shy of his career high.

”I would like to think it’s all part of the season,” Votto said. ”I felt good. I have felt good. I’ve been swinging the bat well.”

Sal Romano (4-7) had a second straight solid outing, limiting the Tigers to four singles over seven shutout innings. Billy Hamilton also homered as the Reds pulled away to a 9-0 lead.

The Tigers had won five straight and moved within a game of .500. They haven’t been to the break-even mark since they were a season-best 4-4 on April 8. They’ve wasted five chances to get back.

Romano was coming off perhaps his best performance in the majors. He went a career-high eight innings and gave up one run during a 5-1 win at Kansas City on Tuesday.

Trailing 9-0, Detroit finally broke through in the ninth when Wandy Peralta walked home a run and Leonys Martin followed with a double.

Boyd walked three batters in four innings – all of them scored – and gave up a season-high five runs. He was most upset with the two walks that set up the first grand slam he’s allowed in his career.

”Walks will kill you,” Boyd said. ”Things like that (grand slam) are going to happen in this ballpark, especially when the wind is blowing out.”

INTERLEAGUE

The Reds are 12-11 against the Tigers all-time. This season, the Tigers are 1-6 in interleague play. The Reds are 5-1.

BIRD IS THE WORD

The bird that wandered onto the field during Votto’s at-bat didn’t go away. It made a mound visit and later explored other parts of the field. Fans cheered when it was shown on the video board.

INTERESTING DESIGN

The outfield grass showed the effects of a concert at Great American Ball Park on Saturday, when high heat and the field covering left yellow patterns in the stressed grass.

STATS

Martin reached in all five plate appearances, going 3 for 3 with two walks. … Cincinnati’s Tucker Barnhart also reached in all five plate appearances, going 3 for 3 with a walk. He also was hit by a pitch. … Eugenio Suarez singled to extend his hitting streak to nine games, the longest active streak on the Reds and one shy of his career high.

REDS MOVE

The Reds called up RH reliever Jackson Stephens and optioned RH reliever Austin Brice to Triple-A Louisville. Stephens was 0-0 with a 4.20 ERA in nine appearances for the Reds earlier this season.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Tigers: Reliever Drew VerHagen left the game in the seventh after getting hit in the face with a throw while covering first base. He broke his nose and had it reset. Manager Ron Gardenhire said the Tigers were working on bringing up another reliever.

Reds: RH Homer Bailey will be re-examined on Tuesday. He’s been sidelined since June 2 with a sore right knee.

UP NEXT

Tigers: Michael Fulmer (2-5) has gone seven innings and allowed one run in each of his last two starts. He’s never faced the Reds.

Reds: Tyler Mahle (5-6) is 2-0 with a 1.10 ERA in three starts in June, allowing two runs in 16 1/3 innings. He’s never faced the Tigers.

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