Bradford tells banged up O-line to be 'bad (expletives)' against Dallas

Sam Bradford didn't hold back in telling the offensive line to step it up this week.

Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer was spotted at Menards earlier this week loading a bunch of training tables into the back of his truck.

No he wasn't.

Menards probably doesn't even have training tables.

But he should consider the idea since most of his offensive line is injured. And now Joe Berger (concussion) is out Thursday against Dallas, paving the way for rookie Nick Easton to start at center, commanding an offensive line that's already lost Matt Kalil, Andre Smith, Mike Harris and Jake Long.

With Berger out, here's what the line will likely look like against the Cowboys.

  • LT: T.J. Clemmings
  • LG: Alex Boone
  • C: Nick Easton
  • RG: Brandon Fusco
  • RT: Jeremiah Sirles

Sirles isn't a sure thing just yet either. He left last week's game against Detroit with a hip injury and didn't return fully to practice until Tuesday.

... you’ve got to be some bad (expletives) this week for me, because there’s some things I want to do ...

But even with all of the injuries, quarterback Sam Bradford is demanding the guys protecting him to be some "bad (expletives)" this week.

"This week especially, (Bradford)’s put a lot of emphasis on us that we need to do more,” Boone told USA TODAY Sports. "He came to us and said, ‘Hey, listen, we need you guys to sustain, and we need you guys to be tough, and you’ve got to be some bad (expletives) this week for me, because there’s some things I want to do and there’s some plays that might take longer.'"

After dinking and dunking his way against Detroit, Bradford said the offense needs to get more explosive.

"With regard to explosive plays, you want them and you try to create them any way possible," Offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur said Tuesday, via "Sometimes it's a short throw and a catch and run, sometimes the ball is launched all the way down the field."

Minnesota's longest passing play of the season is 46 yards. Only one other team (Tampa Bay) has a shorter, longest passing play. And the Vikings rank 25th in the league with only four passing plays of 40+ yards.

But even the Vikings should be able to get big chunks against the Cowboys' 31st-ranked passing defense. Dallas has racked up only 20 sacks as a team and they're allowing opposing quarterbacks to post a blistering 101.9 passer rating.

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