Tommy Armstrong played quarterback at Nebraska, worked out as a wide receiver and quarterback at his pro day, came to the Minnesota Vikings’ rookie minicamp on a tryout basis as a running back and practiced at safety during organized team activities after they signed him.
The wild ride is over, at least for now, as the Vikings released Armstrong on Friday.
“I kind of labeled myself as an athlete right after the first game of the season just to have my mind open to any position to help a team,” Armstrong said earlier this month. “That’s helped a lot.”
But his transition to the defensive side of the ball was a short one with the Vikings. He lasted only a few weeks before his release.
During minicamp earlier this week, he looked confused and late on at least one play and the Vikings apparently decided he didn’t have a future at that position. The team didn’t announce any corresponding signing after his release.
Veteran cornerback Terence Newman had taken Armstrong under his wing, trying to get him familiar with both the scheme and the techniques of a defensive back.
“It’s a great learning experience for me. I’m doing the best I can to help the team,” Armstrong said midway through his stint with the Vikings. “I’ve got great guys out there; that’s helped me. Terence Newman is one of the guys that works with me after practice. Coach [Mike] Zimmer and he, he’s helped me a lot during practice, working with me one-on-one, just to get me to do as much as I can before practice is over with to learn as much as I can so quickly.”
For now, however, his ride with the Vikings is over.