Russell Signs One-Year Contract

Safety Brian Russell signed a small one-year contract Monday amid speculation that their might be a rift between him and the coaching staff.

Brian Russell was a savior for the Vikings defense last season. Among the league leaders in interceptions all season, Russell went from being a nobody to being a strength of an improving defense last year.

But that didn't get him a long-term contract. After missing time in the team's "voluntary" workout program, Russell showed up for the first day of the team's developmental camp without the big contract he had hoped for -- leading to speculation that the coaches are upset that he hasn't been around to take in the changes that new defensive coordinator Ted Cottrell is putting in.

An exclusive rights free agent unable to negotiate with other teams, Russell signed a one-year, $380,000 contract -- the minimum for a player with two years of NFL experience. No discussion was made over looking at a long-term deal and Russell accepted the offer and signed the contract.

* As expected, Randy Moss sat out Monday's drills. He is still recovering from plantar fasciitis and isn't expected to take part in the team's minicamp.
* Three players were excused from Monday's start of developmental camp -- Nate Burleson, Chuck Wiley and Moe Williams.
* Greg Biekert was also a no-show. VU has been told that Biekert, who remains on the roster, has told the Vikings he is retiring. An official announcement could come as early as Wednesday or Thursday.

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