Notebook: Favre pumps up Shiancoe

Brett Favre acknowledged missing receiver Sidney Rice, but Favre praised the talents of tight end Visanthe Shiancoe. He also explained the shift away from Adrian Peterson in the fourth quarter, and Percy Harvin showed up on the injury report.

Brett Favre spent about half of his nearly 17-minute press conference answering questions about his wide receivers, specifically getting on the same page with Bernard Berrian and Greg Camarillo and what the offense is missing with Sidney Rice out for at least the first six weeks of the season.

But Favre had all kinds of praise for tight end Visanthe Shiancoe and what he brings to the Vikings offense.

"It's hard to compare him yet. I've played with some good ones. Never really played with (one tight end) for too long, but once again have worked with some very productive tight ends," Favre said.

"I think as far as physical ability, Shank's in a class by himself – size, power, speed. I don't know if I've ever seen that combination."

When asked how Shiancoe compares to other tight ends Favre has played with, the quarterback singled out Keith Jackson, one of his favorite targets during their time together in 1995 and 1996 in Green Bay.

"I only played with Keith Jackson for a short amount of time, but first play I ever called with him, we hit it off right like that. The guy had an uncanny ability to beat coverages, was not as physically gifted as Shank, but he knew how to use his body and set up guys and things like that," Favre said.

When Favre and Jackson were paired together for a full season in 1996, Jackson had 40 catches for 505 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Last year, in the first year of the Favre-Shiancoe pairing, the tight end had 56 catches for 566 yards and 11 touchdowns. In the opener, Shiancoe paced the Vikings with four catches for 76 yards and a touchdown, but Favre said Shiancoe still has to learn how to use his body better to set up defenders.

"That's probably the biggest thing for him. I know he's not young, but he's still kind of learning the ins and outs," Favre said. "His physical ability gets him by a lot of times, but if he uses his body and lean on guys and just run sometimes, he could be so dominating. And as I say that, he's been pretty darn productive since I've been here. As his confidence grows and he understands the game even more, he could be by far the most dominating tight end I've ever played with."


The Vikings only ran nine plays in the fourth quarter of their 14-9 season-opening loss to the New Orleans Saints, but none of them were running plays. So how much did the Saints defense dictate the Vikings' move away from the running game?

"They changed their defense a little bit," Favre said. "…We didn't want to get into a throw 40 or 50 times (situation). We knew it would be hard to hold up in protection just because of their scheme. If we ran the ball really well, the bottom line is you've got to get points, and I'm sure as a play-caller you don't want to end up in third-and-10 situations."

Favre said the Vikings were "gashing" the Saints in the run game to start the second half. Peterson ran the ball seven times on the Vikings' first possession of the second half, a 16-play drive that ended in a field goal.

After that, the Saints changed up their defense, according to Favre.

"The thing with Adrian, there is never really a bad run with him, but also (as) a play-caller … you don't want to go to the well too often, either," Favre said. "They did do some things defensively to stop or try to stop what we were doing running the football because we were running the ball well.

"Bottom line is about getting points and it's always easier to look back and say, ‘Yeah, we should have done this or we should have done that.' If I'm Adrian, I'm sitting here telling you guys, ‘Yeah, they should have given it to me more.' That's the type of player and guy he is and that's good. And maybe we should have."

Favre also said he missed some throws in the Saints game that could have made a difference.

"I make those throws, once again we're probably not having this conversation," Favre said.


Percy Harvin talked about a potential cure to his migraine headaches with his recent diagnosis of sleep apnea, but he appeared on the Vikings' injury report on Wednesday with a hip injury. He was one of five Vikings that were limited. Joining Harvin were CBs Chris Cook (knee) and Cedric Griffin (knee), DT Jimmy Kennedy (knee) and left tackle Bryant McKinnie (finger).

QB Brett Favre now has his back listed on injury report in addition to his ankle, but he was a full participant in Wednesday's practice, as were RB Toby Gerhart (knee) and C John Sullivan (calf).

For the Dolphins, DE Ikaika Alama-Francis (illness), LB Channing Crowder (groin) and DE Jared Odrick (ankle) did not practice and were the only players listed on the Saints injury report. Odrick will not play, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.


  • RB Toby Gerhart (knee) was deactivated against the Saints, but Childress said he has progressed in his ability to pick up blitzes. "He's come a long way in a short period of time," Childress said, acknowledging that Gerhart didn't play last week because of the knee injury.

  • The Vikings were 9-0 at home (including the playoffs) last year and Childress said they talk about trying to continue that streak as they head into their home opener Sunday.

    "You want to be able to hold serve at home. I don't think that there's any question about that, and then be able to get the wins that you're able to on the road," Childress said. "I could tell you this: 12 of 16 homes teams won in Week 1, four road teams had a four-point average margin of victory. It makes a difference and you need to hold home serve."

  • The Vikings did, indeed, work out four receivers on Tuesday – Reggie Brown, Ruvell Martin, Demetrius Williams and Sam Aiken – according to's Adam Caplan, but they didn't sign any of them.

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