MANKATO, Minn. (WCCO) — You look at this Vikings roster and there’s no position group that inspires more confidence than the defensive line — and it’s not close.
“Oh man, we got tremendous athletes,” Everson Griffen said.
It’s the most veteran group, and some of the most talented, with the two longest-tenured players on the roster in Brian Robison and Griffen, another pro bowler in Linval Joseph and a budding star in Danielle Hunter. And some solid role players in Tom Johnson and Shamar Stephen.
“We have a great group of defensive linemen that can get the job done on a high level, that Andre Patterson trusts in and believes in on a high level. The biggest thing for us is coming together and work,” Griffen said. “It starts with this process of grinding and coming together as a team and coming together as a unit to be able to get where we want to go. And we could be the best, but it’s up to us. Like coach Patterson always says, it ain’t easy being great. You got to go out there and work each and every day to be great.”
“The sky’s the limit for us, man. We got a lot of guys that’s been — I’ve been here four years now, going on four years and almost all the guys I’m playing with been here the same — as long as me. So just to have the same guys, understand these guys, knowing these guys and trusting these guys. We know we can be great,” Joseph said.
“We do a great job of working together. That’s really what makes us stand out a little bit. There’s nobody out here that’s out for their own, whatever, out to make their own plays or anything like that,” Robison said. “We know and understand that in this defense, in order to make plays we have to all work together and everybody will get their portion. That’s really what makes this defensive line a great front to be a part of.”
The Vikings might have their issues in other areas of the roster, as every team does, but when it comes to defensive line, there may not be a more reliable unit in the league.
“It’s just competition. At the end of the day, we all think we’re the best. So we want to push each other to be the best we can be and that’s what we like to do,” Joseph said.