From last night's press conference -- Vikings and North team coach Leslie Frazier:
"One thing that we really try to stress is how important practices are -- not just the games," said Frazier. "These practices are going to be watched by every team and just about every personnel person across the league. So we really try to emphasize the importance of having great practices and to have to that carried over to the games. The guys really seem to be responding to that."
"It's been a lot of fun," Martin said. "Being able to come out here and be coached by this Viking staff has been a great opportunity for me. I just continue to look forward to practice every day."
A wonderful week of weather has given way to a heavy, steady rain and chance of thunderstorms, which has necessitated practice being moved from Ladd-Peebles Stadium to a ballroom at the nearby Mobile Convention Center. The North squad is basically going through a walk-through as the intensity level is being dialed down in preparation for Saturday's game.
Many of the NFL personnel left town last night after the South squad's final full-pad practice. A handful of scouts, media and hardcore fans remain to watch the teams go through their final paces.
Jeff Curts has written for the Bleacher Report, Examiner.com, NFL Draft Dog and published The Slant...NFL Draft Newsletter. Curts is a graduate of Sports Management Worldwide, having completed the Scout & General Manager course under the direction of former NFL scout and current Sporting News draft expert Russ Lande. Jeff is founder and publisher of the Web site Bears Claws and hosts the program "Bears Claws" on BlogtalkRadio. He is a regular contributor to BearReport.com.