The Minnesota Vikings’ first win of the season wasn’t all fanfare in the locker room.
Second-year cornerback Cameron Dantzler has some grievances.
After watching Breeland struggle for a third consecutive week, Dantzler appears to have reached his boiling point.
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‘I’m Tired of Biting My Tongue About This’
Under an hour after the Vikings defeated the Seattle Seahawks 30-17 on Sunday, Dantzler published a cryptic tweet saying, “I’m tired of biting my tongue about this whole situation (for real).”
After seeing some backlash from fans, Dantzler defended himself after Sunday’s message, posting another tweet saying, “Damn everything I tweet not about football… I have a normal life also. But great team win!”
However, Dantzler deleted both tweets shortly after he posted his rebuttal.
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The tweet wasn’t an anomaly.
Dantzler fired off a cryptic tweet after he was benched in Week 1. Coach Mike Zimmer said Dantzler would have to become a better special teams player to return to the field, publicly relegating the former third-round pick as Breeland’s understudy.
“First thing, he’s gotta play special teams,” Zimmer said in a September 15 press conference. “If you’re a backup player, you’ve gotta play special teams.”
Dantzler seemed to be taking a step in the right direction when he played 16 defensive snaps against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 2. He made a crucial pass breakup on A.J. Green in the end zone late in the game that kept the Vikings’ hopes alive before Greg Joseph’s missed field goal.
“It was quite a surprise, but I feel like that humbled me and made me hungry,” Dantzler said last week regarding his benching. “So I just came to practice each and every day and worked harder, so that won’t ever happen again.”
Unfortunately for Dantzler, it happened again. He played zero defensive snaps and had just nine reps on special teams against the Seahawks in Week 3.
Dantzler Has Outperformed Breeland
While the positive body of work by Dantzler this season is limited, he has shown to be a considerable improvement over Breeland.
He ranks 108 of 108 graded cornerbacks through three weeks of the season with a 30.4 position grade. Breeland allowed 18 receptions on 21 targets (85.7%) for 257 yards and four touchdowns this season and a nearly perfect quarterback rating of 157.2 when targeted in coverage. He’s the only graded NFL cornerback with a sub-30 coverage grade, currently at 29.6.
What’s worse is Breeland is trending in the wrong direction. He’s allowed all 13 pass attempts thrown his way to be caught for 150 yards and two TDs, per PFF.
Meanwhile, Dantzler allowed only two catches for 23 yards on four targets and a 54.6 passer rating in 16 snaps against the Cardinals.
Dantzler’s frustration is warranted given Breeland’s abysmal play so far.
Coach Mike Zimmer said he would talk to Dantzler when asked about the cryptic tweets in a Monday press conference.