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Vikings survived against Detroit, but Mike Zimmer admits, ‘We’re not all happy about how we won’

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Vikings survived against Detroit, but Mike Zimmer admits, ‘We’re not all happy about how we won’

After a loss the previous week, head coach Mike Zimmer talked about what a good team the Vikings had. After a win Sunday, there were no such pronouncements.

The Vikings blew a 10-point lead in the final three minutes and needed a 54-yard field goal by Greg Joseph on the final play at U.S. Bank Stadium to win 19-17 over winless Detroit, one of the NFL’s worst teams. That came on the heels of a 14-7 home loss on Oct. 3 to Cleveland, one of the league’s better teams.

“Well, it’s a win,” Zimmer said Monday. “And I think the good thing about it is that we’re not all happy about how we won. I think it’s easy, human nature, that the next week, when you win a game, that you’re maybe not as focused or something like that, and right now they need to be focused again.”

Next up for the Vikings (2-3) is Sunday’s game at Carolina (3-2). Zimmer said they have work to do, especially after having “struggled some offensively.”

After averaging 29.7 points in the first three games, the Vikings have averaged just 13 points in the past two. Inconsistent and conservative play on offense has led to boos ringing through the crowd Sunday.

“You never want your own fans to be booing you, but we’ve got to execute,” center Garrett Bradbury said. “Whatever play’s called, our job as players is to play, and coaches have done a great job of putting us in positions, and we trust whichever direction they want to go. (The boos don’t) get to us, but it’s just a little bit more emphasis on we’ve got to make plays.”

The biggest boos came during a stretch when the Lions took advantage of Alexander Mattison’ fumble at the Minnesota 20 inside the final two minutes to take a 17-16 lead with a touchdown and a two-point conversion with 0:37 on the clock. While the defense generally played well Sunday and the Lions had a short field after the turnover, linebacker Anthony Barr said they needed to be kept out of the end zone near the end.

“We just have to continue to be better in those end-of-game situations and try not to be in those positions where we have to put something together in 30 seconds to win the game,” Barr said.

Taking over at their 18 with 37 seconds left, the Vikings gained 46 yards on three plays to set the stage for Joseph’s winning kick.

DARRISAW’S DEBUT

Vikings rookie left tackle Christian Darrisaw played his first NFL snaps from scrimmage on Sunday, but Zimmer was noncommittal about how much action he will get moving forward.

Darrisaw, the No. 23 pick in the draft, who made his overall NFL debut against Cleveland with one play on special teams, got in for 28 plays against the Lions. Rashod Hill started for the fifth straight game and played 39 snaps as the Vikings rotated left tackles.

Zimmer said Darrisaw “did OK.” Will Zimmer need to make a decision this week on his left tackle for the game against the Panthers, or might he still rotate the two?

“We’ll see how the week goes, and we’ll decide from there,” Zimmer said.

According to Pro Football Focus, Hill had the second-worst grade against the Lions of any Minnesota offensive player at 54.2. Darrisaw had the third worst at 55.5.

“(Darrisaw) was pretty dialed in,” said Bradbury, in his third season. “So it’s good to see. I’ve been there before, it’s your first game playing and there’s a lot of moving pieces and it might feel like your head’s spinning, but I thought he looked composed and under control.”

GRIFFEN’S SNAPS

Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen started Sunday for the first time this year and played a season-high 49 snaps, but Zimmer said that was too many.

“He probably played too much,” Zimmer said. “We’re trying to maintain him so … if we can keep him to 30, 35, we feel like we can maintain his athleticism, and power and things like that through the course of the year.”

Zimmer said Griffen “played really well.” He got the start over D.J. Wonnum, who was in for 40 snaps.

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Homicide investigation underway after man stabbed to death in Westminster home Monday

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100-year-old Longmont man assaulted along Main Street has died

Jefferson County authorities are investigating a homicide after a man was found stabbed to death early Monday inside a Westminster home.

Sheriff’s deputies responded at 4 a.m. to the 10400 block of Ammons Street to reports of a break-in, and upon arrival found the unidentified man dead, the sheriff’s office said in a news release.

A witness who lives at the house told police that “the male had forced entry into the home and was stabbed by another female resident during a physical altercation between the male and the witness,” authorities said in the release.

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Lionel Messi and Alexia Putellas win Ballon d’Or awards

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Lionel Messi and Alexia Putellas win Ballon d’Or awards

PARIS — Lionel Messi won the men’s Ballon d’Or for a record-extending seventh time on Monday, ending the year in style after a brilliant final season with Barcelona and earning his first major international trophy with Argentina.

Alexia Putellas became the third winner of the women’s award for an outstanding season with Barcelona and Spain.

The 34-year-old Messi led Argentina to the Copa America title in July after losing in four major international finals.

“I’m very happy to be here, happy to keep fighting for new trophies,” he said through a translator. “I don’t know how many years I have left, but I hope many more. I’d like to thank all my (former) teammates at Barcelona and Argentina.”

Messi finished with 613 points to top prolific Bayern Munich and Poland striker Robert Lewandowski on 580.

“I would like to say to Robert that it’s an honor to be your rival, and everyone would say you deserved to win it last year,” Messi said.

Awarded by France Football magazine, the Ballon d’Or has been given out to men every year since 1956 when Stanley Matthews won.

Both 2020 awards were canceled because the coronavirus pandemic disrupted the season.

The 33-year-old Lewandowski set a new single-season scoring record for the Bundesliga with 41 goals — one more than late Germany great Gerd Müller — when he scored in the last minute of the last game.

Lewandowski netted in 19 consecutive games in all competitions for Bayern from February to September and he just missed out on equaling the record of scoring in 16 Bundesliga games in a row. Overall, he already has 25 goals in 20 games for Bayern this season.

His 11 goals in 12 games for Poland this year took his international tally to 74 in 128 games, just six less than Messi.

Chelsea and Italy midfielder Jorginho was third with 460 points after helping the London club win the Champions League and his nation win the European Championship. Real Madrid and France forward Karim Benzema was fourth on 239.

Putellas helped Barca win the treble and scored 26 goals in 42 games overall. The midfielder netted in the Champions League final against Chelsea, and in August she was named UEFA women’s player of the year.

“I’m very emotional, it’s a very special moment,” she said at the Paris ceremony through a translator. “I would like to start by thanking all my teammates, especially my current (Barcelona) teammates. For me it’s a collective success.”

The only previous women’s award winners are Norway striker Ada Hegerberg in 2018, and U.S. forward Megan Rapinoe in 2019.

Putellas tallied 186 points to finish far ahead of club and country teammate Jenni Hermoso on 84.

Hermoso netted 31 goals to top the Spanish first division scoring charts for a third straight season. Hermoso was joint-top scorer in the Champions League with Chelsea’s Fran Kirby on six goals.

Chelsea and Australia striker Sam Kerr placed third in the voting after 21 goals in the English Women’s Super League and six for Australia at the Tokyo Games. Kerr has maintained her excellent form with 13 goals in 12 games this season.

Messi, meanwhile, counts two more Ballon d’Or awards than longtime rival Cristiano Ronaldo, who was sixth in the voting.

Messi’s staggering tally of 672 goals for Barcelona included an extraordinary 50-goal league season in 2012; 96 league goals across 2012 and 2013; eight Spanish league and six Champions League scoring titles.

In his final season with the Spanish giant he netted 38 overall, winning his last trophy with a superb performance in the Copa del Rey final. At the Copa America, Messi was inspirational, finishing joint-top scorer with four goals and leading with five assists.

Then he stunned the soccer world by joining Paris Saint-Germain.

He has made a modest start with four goals in nine games. But he remains a constant threat, even when he’s not in top form, as he showed on Sunday in a 3-1 win at Saint-Etienne where he set up all three goals.

In other awards, the Kopa Trophy for the best under 21 player went to 19-year-old Spain and Barcelona midfielder Pedri. He caught the eye at Euro 2020 and reached the Olympic final.

The Lev Yashin for best goalkeeper was won by Gianluigi Donnarumma, who helped Italy win the Euros.

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Editorial: Since Boebert seems incapable, we’ll apologize to Omar for her

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Editorial: Since Boebert seems incapable, we’ll apologize to Omar for her

The Denver Post editorial board has mostly tried to ignore U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert’s antics because they add so little to the public discourse. Since the Western Slope representative was elected in November 2020, we’ve published two editorials about her. The first urged an investigation into the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol and whether her words and actions helped former President Donald Trump spark the insurrection; the other editorial defended Boebert from sexist and elitist attacks targeting her on social media for her physical appearance and her lack of a college education.

But last week, Boebert crossed a line and now we must stand up for common decency. Boebert is intentionally using her platform to peddle a gross and false narrative about Muslim Americans. We cannot fathom what evil intent drives this behavior, but after first apologizing, Boebert now has made matters worse.

In a video that was circulated widely last week after being tweeted out by Patriot Takes — a group that describes its mission as “to research, monitor and expose the extremism and radicalization of the far-right across the darkest parts of the Internet” — Boebert told supporters a story about getting on an elevator and seeing a security guard rush toward her as the doors were closing:

“I look to my left and there she is: Ilhan Omar. And I said, ‘Well, she doesn’t have a backpack. We should be fine,’” Boebert said in the video to cheers from the audience. “I looked over and I said, ‘Oh look, the jihad squad decided to show up for work today.’ ”

Making a joke about suicide bombers and suggesting that a congresswoman is a threat to safety and security because she is a Muslim is both racist and a form of religious bigotry. Boebert did apologize to “anyone in the Muslim community I offended with my comment about Rep. Omar,” and she pledged to call Omar directly, however, Boebert reported in a strange video on Monday that that phone call went poorly, and it’s no wonder given that she prefaces the conversation by once again raising the scepter of concern about Omar and threats to American security.

“Make no mistake. I will continue to fearlessly put America first. Never sympathizing with terrorists. Unfortunately, Ilhan can’t say the same thing, and our country is worse off for it,” she said.

Rep. Ilhan Omar deserved nothing short of a full apology. Instead, Boebert used the phone call as a publicity stunt and further insulted Omar. Boebert is clearly incapable of remorse or reflection, so as her fellow Coloradans — a beautiful place of tolerance and respect, diversity and freedom — we will help her.

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