VikingBuzz BLOG: 7/29

The Vikings enter training camp with lots of question marks still, but they also have lots of talent with lots of upside potential. How soon it will all come together remains to be seen. Here's the latest...

>Wade leads by example on the field
Free agent signee Bobby Wade is already the senior member of the team’s young wide receiver corps.  “He's been a great leader throughout our offseason program.  He's a can-do guy.  Guys get in line and follow him like the pied piper,” head coach Brad Childress told Frank Rajkowski of the St. Cloud Times in this article.  “As a football player, he understands what he's looking at.  He understands how to work zones and how to be able to drop man-to-man coverage.  He's got some elusiveness to him.  Those are things I like about him.  He's with you.  When you're talking to him, he's getting it and you appreciate that in a football player.”

>Receivers young but with plenty of potential
Sean Jensen of the Pioneer Press takes a closer look at the newcomers the team hopes will improve the team’s passing game – Visanthe Shiancoe, Bobby Wade, Sidney Rice, Cortez Hankton, Aundrae Allison, Chandler Williams and Todd Lowber.

>Herrera trying to make the most of chance at more reps
Guard Anthony Herrera has more than held his own in early practices in training camp, getting additional reps with the first unit as Bryant McKinnie nurses a hamstring injury, prompting a shift of Artis Hicks to left tackle, with Herrera taking over at right guard.  “I think it is too early to tell how comfortable you would be (with Herrera as a starter) three practices in, but I think Anthony has done a nice job to this point,” offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell said during a media briefing on Saturday.  “He has been sharp on his assignments and the most important thing for him is he is doing it the way we’re asking him to do it.  (When they do it the right way that) obviously gives us confidence to be able to plug them in there.”  Jim Rueda from the Mankato Free Press offers this report.

>No holding back for Greenway
Linebacker Chad Greenway has not been limited at all during training camp thus far, showing no ill affects from the knee surgery that wiped out his entire rookie campaign with the Vikings.  “He had no pause about him,” coach Brad Childress says in this Argus Leader story by Mick Garry.  “There is no hesitation; there is no problem with the see to do.  If anything we are training his eyes more than anything.  So I don't see anything that he is holding back from at all.”

>Progress reported on Peterson front
No deal yet but Kevin Seifert of the StarTribune reports progress in negotiations.  Complicating matters a bit perhaps was that the Atlanta Falcons probably overpaid for No. 8 pick Jamaal Anderson in efforts to score a positive PR strike in the midst of all the negative publicity of the Michael Vick fiasco.  Seifert reports the Vikings and Peterson’s people are “inching closer.”

>Training camp tidbits:  Saturday
Here’s what you’ll find in the links below:  Rice on the field, Allison impresses Childress, makes catch of day, Herrera looks sharp so far, Frazier likes the intensity he sees, Leber sits with strained calf, Thomas steps in, Bevell calls plays, Jones looks smooth catching the ball, McCauley continues to impress, Robison showing flashes, Peterson still unsigned, praise all around for Williams, Sharper meets Richardson, Taylor can still make you miss, Tank brings it, Bevell and Fraizer talk to media, Glenn active on pass defense.
Don Seeholzer, Pioneer Press
Dave Campbell, AP
Phil Mackey, KFAN
Kevin Seifert, StarTribune
Coordinator Quotes, Vikings.com
Mike Wobschall, Vikings.com
Judd Zulgad, StarTribune
Kevin Seifert, StarTribune
Sean Jensen, PioneerPress
Sean Jensen, PioneerPress
Don Seeholzer, PioneerPress
Kevin Seifert, StarTribune
Sean Jensen, PioneerPress
Jeff Budlong, Albert Lea Tribune

>Vikings defense in good hands with Frazier
The loss of defensive coordinator Mike Tomlin isn’t the end of the world.  In fact, as Jim Souhan of the StarTribune reports, the Vikings defense is still in very capable hands with Leslie Frazier at the helm.  Judd Zulgad of the StarTribune also has a report on Frazier.

>Williamson not lacking confidence
The nugget in this AP report by Dave Campbell is Troy Williamson saying, “I’m No. 1.  You decide who No. 2 is.”  Another interesting point is that Terrell Owens led the NFL last season with 17 dropped passes, while Williamson was tied for second (according to research by Stats, Inc.) with 11 drops.  In this Pioneer Press article, receivers coach George Stewart says:  “I don't have a problem with Troy Williamson's hands.  The biggest thing for us is to be able to transfer (what Williamson did during the offseason) to the field.  I'm excited about Troy Williamson.  I'm excited about the opportunity for him to play.”

>Coaches not worried about distraction with Williams
So no extension for veteran Pat Williams at this point, but as Don Seeholzer of the Pioneer Press reports, the coaching staff is not concerned that the issue will become a distraction this season.

>Childress preaching patience with Jackson
John Clayton of ESPN.com reports that patience is the name of the game with quarterback Tarvaris Jackson.

>Cook still adjusting to playing tackle
Sid Hartman of the StarTribune writes that second-year pro Ryan Cook is still adjusting to playing tackle after being predominantly a center in college.  It also hints that he may take some reps inside, which suggests he might not have the starting job at right tackle locked up by any means, where Marcus Johnson also offers viable competition and some think better long-range potential.

>Lowber pursuing football dream
Here’s a story by Jeff Roberts of NorthJersey.com on first-year wide receiver Todd Lowber and his pursuit at a pro football career.

>Winfield likes Frazier
“I like him,” cornerback Antoine Winfield tells Sid Hartman of the StarTribune, when asked about new defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier.  “I could have been there a lot more and gotten to know him a little better [this offseason], but from what I do know of him he's a good coach, and I talked to a lot of players that have played under him.  He's played the game at my position so he kind of knows what a corner likes.  We love pressure [on the quarterback], so I think we'll be doing a lot of that this year.”

>A vision of what new stadium could look like
This TCDailyPlanet.net article describes the potential of downtown Minneapolis with a new stadium where the Metrodome currently is.  It also offers an illustration of a proposed Vikings stadium, including a light rail station and plaza, that would take the place of the Dome.

>Gray facemasks for Packers game only
The gray facemasks the Vikings have been wearing in training camp so far are just to break in helmets for a “throwback” game Sept. 30 against the Green Bay Packers.

>Officially add “no dogfighting” to list of no-no’s
It should go without saying, but apparently not.  The NFL might have to clarify that dogfighting is against the league’s personal conduct policy, Vikings fullback Tony Richardson tells Mark Craig of the StarTribune.

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