Vikings Eyeing McMahon

The Vikings are still in the market for a veteran backup to Brad Johnson and former Brad Childress protege Mike McMahon may be the answer.

From the minute Daunte Culpepper left the Vikings, questions began to surface as to who the team would get to back up Brad Johnson. Wednesday, it appeared that Mike McMahon stepped into the role of frontrunner.

McMahon, who began his career with the Lions and spent last year as a seven-game starter with the Eagles and offensive coordinator Brad Childress, was released last week when the Eagles signed Jeff Garcia as their backup QB. McMahon was at Winter Park yesterday and the Vikings made a contract offer to him late Wednesday.

McMahon is scheduled to meet the Broncos today, but said he would view the Vikings as an ideal fit since he already knows the offense and terminology of the Childress system.

McMahon hasn't set the NFL on fire in his short career. He started seven games for the Eagles last year when Donovan McNabb went down, but had a passer rating of just 55.2. For his career he has completed just 45.3 percent of his passes.

With McMahon moving to the forefront, the chances would seem to increase that the Vikings will look for a long-term quarterback answer during next month's draft.

THURSDAY NOTES
* A Hennepin County judge refused to drop charges against Culpepper and Moe Williams Wednesday at a hearing. Both argued they had nothing to do with any impropriety -- Culpepper going as far as to say he never touched any woman on the boat in any fashion. There is a good chance that, while the charges weren't dropped Wednesday, they will be dropped before a trial would begin. As expected, Culpepper didn't speak to the media following his court appearance.
* Mike Rosenthal agreed to a restructured contract Wednesday, but it didn't include a reduction in his base salary.
* The Vikings closed the Sid Hartman Media Center at Winter Park and the media have been moved off-site to an office complex across the street. The plan is to converted the media center -- a cramped converted racquetball court -- into office space for team employees.
* Raonall Smith will visit the Rams today. Former Vikings coach Scott Linehan has already signed former Vikes Corey Chavous and Gus Frerotte since arriving in St. Louis.
* The national media was all over the story about Tyrone Carter's brother Tank getting an extra four-and-a-half years of jail time for not turning himself in for a prison term after attending the Super Bowl. But it should be noted that Carter's prison sentence was supposed to begin Jan. 6 and the Super Bowl wasn't until Feb. 5 and the excuse given was that Tyrone told him the Steelers "had a good chance" of going to the Super Bowl as the No. 6 seed in the AFC, which only had to win on the road in games against the Bengals, Colts and Broncos.
* The Packers opened their offseason workout program Wednesday and neither WR Javon Walker or safety Mark Roman showed up.

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