For roster-bubble Vikings, the waiting begins

For almost half of the players currently on the Vikings roster, there are no guarantees when the team announces its final 53-man roster that their names will be on it. Different players are taking a different approaches to avoiding the call none of them wants to get, with a few of them citing religion to them through the tough times.

For half of the players that took the field Thursday in the Vikings 28-0 win over Houston, the weekend will be a chance to kick back and relax before they begin the grind of a 16-game regular season. For the other 40 players, their exit from the Metrodome Thursday night may be their last, as the team cuts down to its final 53-man roster.

Different players look at the situation differently, as both young players and veteran players sweat out the hours until the official announcement is made Saturday. In an ironic twist to Labor Day weekend, it will find almost 30 of the players on the field Thursday unemployed when Labor Day hits.

For the long shots, like offensive tackle Patrick Brown, waiting to get the news will be a nail-biting experience. When asked how the next couple of days will go, Brown said the clock may actually stop ticking.

"They're going to be long, really long," Brown said of the next two days. "The minutes will seem like hours and the hours will seem like days. They've always told me I have a chance and the opportunity was there. Prior to the game [offensive line coach] Jeff Davidson told me that besides the starting five there are no locked-in positions. They're going to watch the tape and make there decisions. I'll be waiting and hoping for the best."

For others, the next 48 hours won't be a nerve-wracking situation. Safety Tyrell Johnson, who has gone from being a starter to being viewed as one of the veterans that may not survive the final cuts, he was a bit indignant to the line of questioning.

"Why?" Johnson said after being asked if he was nervous about his roster spot. "Jesus Christ is my savior so why would I worry about anything else? Whatever is supposed to be for me will be for me. If it's not, it's not, no matter what I do or how much I worry."

Defensive end Adrian Awasom is looking to reclaim his NFL career after spending the last two seasons in the UFL. He said he knows the butterflies will be there on Saturday, but said he has to keep believing he has done enough to earn the respect of the coaches and, along the way, earn his spot on the 53-man roster.

"This is my third year in the NFL, but it's my sixth year in professional sports," Awasom said. "I've been through this before and you kind of have to let the cards fall where they may. I know there's a lot involved in the picking of roster spots that is beyond my control. I've just been trying to put my best foot forward. You have to play with confidence. I think I did a good job for the Vikings, so we'll see what happens."

Linebacker David Herron finds himself in a different sort of position. A former Viking who was signed away by New England three years ago has come back to the Vikings late in the game as far as acclimating himself back to the team, but said he won't let the anxious moments get to him.

"For me, the nerves part of it is pretty much gone," Herron said. "I've been through this before, so I'll just sit back, pray to God and let him handle things. I'm just going to try not to think about it. They had me in with the [the second line on the defensive depth chart], so I'm hoping that's a good sign, because it would be great to be back here."

There is a chance that all four of those players will make the team. There is a slim chance that none of them will end up on the 53-man roster. More likely two or three of them will not get the dreaded call on Saturday informing them they didn't make the team. But, whether they admit it or not, every time their phone sounds up over the next couple of days, it will likely be the source of shock and awe – as they doing everything from denial to praying to hoping their chance will come to prove themselves during the regular season.


John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.



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When asked how the next couple of days will go, Brown said the clock may actually stop ticking. \"They're going to be long, really long,\" Brown said of the next two days. \"The minutes will seem like hours and the hours will seem like days. They've always told me I have a chance and the opportunity was there. Prior to the game [offensive line coach] Jeff Davidson told me that besides the starting five there are no locked-in positions. They're going to watch the tape and make there decisions. I'll be waiting and hoping for the best.\" For others, the next 48 hours won't be a nerve-wracking situation. Safety Tyrell Johnson, who has gone from being a starter to being viewed as one of the veterans that may not survive the final cuts, he was a bit indignant to the line of questioning. \"Why?\" Johnson said after being asked if he was nervous about his roster spot. \"Jesus Christ is my savior so why would I worry about anything else? Whatever is supposed to be for me will be for me. If it's not, it's not, no matter what I do or how much I worry.\" Defensive end Adrian Awasom is looking to reclaim his NFL career after spending the last two seasons in the UFL. He said he knows the butterflies will be there on Saturday, but said he has to keep believing he has done enough to earn the respect of the coaches and, along the way, earn his spot on the 53-man roster. \"This is my third year in the NFL, but it's my sixth year in professional sports,\" Awasom said. \"I've been through this before and you kind of have to let the cards fall where they may. I know there's a lot involved in the picking of roster spots that is beyond my control. I've just been trying to put my best foot forward. You have to play with confidence. I think I did a good job for the Vikings, so we'll see what happens.\" Linebacker David Herron finds himself in a different sort of position. A former Viking who was signed away by New England three years ago has come back to the Vikings late in the game as far as acclimating himself back to the team, but said he won't let the anxious moments get to him. \"For me, the nerves part of it is pretty much gone,\" Herron said. \"I've been through this before, so I'll just sit back, pray to God and let him handle things. I'm just going to try not to think about it. They had me in with the [the second line on the defensive depth chart], so I'm hoping that's a good sign, because it would be great to be back here.\" There is a chance that all four of those players will make the team. There is a slim chance that none of them will end up on the 53-man roster. More likely two or three of them will not get the dreaded call on Saturday informing them they didn't make the team. But, whether they admit it or not, every time their phone sounds up over the next couple of days, it will likely be the source of shock and awe – as they doing everything from denial to praying to hoping their chance will come to prove themselves during the regular season. 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