Farmer Release Report Premature

Contrary to published reports that had TE Steve Farmer being released Tuesday, VU spotted him on the sidelines Wednesday, still a Viking.

It's become one of the admittedly worst parts of Mike Tice's career as a head coach -- asked to respond to questions concerning non-football matters.

This week has been no exception. In the aftermath of the brawl that included three Vikings early Sunday morning, speculation began as early as Monday that tight end Steve Farmer would be released. Farmer, who is recovering from a football-related knee injury, has been at practice, but on the sidelines this week.

But contrary to rumors and at least one published report, Farmer has yet to be released. VU saw him on the sidelines Wednesday morning at practice -- a clear indication that, for the time being anyway, he hasn't been cut.

While his future with the team remains in serious doubt -- adding to his personal problem, the Vikings have 10 tight ends on their roster and will likely keep four at the most -- for the time being, he will remain with the team.

* Tice strongly denied that the signing of linebacker Keith Newman had any correlation to Sunday's melee in downtown Minneapolis. He said Tuesday that the team had been in talks with Newman as early as two months ago and the plan to sign him came before last weekend's unrest.
* After speculation arose that the Vikings might try to sign Kenechi Udeze earlier than they have first-rounders in previous years, those pretty much got dashed Tuesday. Udeze's agent said that he doesn't expect contract talks to begin in earnest until July 1 at the earliest.

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