VikingBuzz BLOG: 7/30

Several of the team's draft picks this season are already making a favorable first impression.

>Allison making most of early opportunities
Rookie wide receiver Aundrae Allison has acclimated himself nicely in early training camp practices.  His goal has been to be consistent, give good effort and be a team player – so far, so good.  He has not at all stood out in early workouts for any drops, and, in fact has made at least one highlight-reel, one-handed reception thus far.  His effort has been very consistent.  And his team attitude can be reflected in his willingness to field and return punts or kickoffs if needed, where Allison appears to be getting every possible chance at the role for each.

>Peterson’s first day and other notes
All eyes were on rookie Adrian Peterson in his first day at training camp.  Here are the latest stories and some other notes from Monday’s training camp session.  Here are the latest reports from, KSTP, StarTribune and

>Childress talks football from Mankato
Head coach Brad Childress appeared on PA & Dubay on KFAN.  He covered a variety of topics.  You can go here to listen.

>McCauley making early contribution
Rookie cornerback Marcus McCauley continues to be noticed.  This story elaborates.  “When we drafted him we felt like he was a guy who had play-making ability and he has flashed early on in these three practices,” defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier says.  “He has kind of validated what we thought about him as a player and we envisioned him being a factor in our third-down package early on really helping us as our third corner.  That is our hope and our goal and so far he has not done anything to disappoint.”

>Taylor still very much in the picture
Running back Chester Taylor is still very much a part of the plan on offense this season as this report says.  There’s also a video link there.

>Whitlock released
Rookie free-agent running back Arkee Whitlock was released before Monday’s practice.  With the arrival of Adrian Peterson, it was clear that Whitlock probably had no chance of making the team, so this gives him at least the chance to get a look elsewhere.

>Legitimate competition at punter?
While it looks like veteran Chris Kluwe has been getting more reps in training camp, special teams coordinator Paul Ferraro insists that rookie free agent Alex Reyes will get his chances in preseason action in the competition for the punting chores.  Reyes has also been trying his hand at kickoffs with mixed results so far.  “He's doing well,” Ferraro said of Reyes.  “He had a nice day punting the other day.  He took some kickoffs in specialists two days ago and showed good improvement from the OTAs.  He struggled a little bit in the OTAs, had a little bit of a thigh bruise.  He was able to work on his kickoffs during that month we had off and came back the other day and had a real nice workout with the kickoffs.

>Vikings inject life into Mankato
In this Mankato Free Press editorial, Vikings training camp for the city of Mankato is still a pretty big deal.  The impact it has on the community is huge, and owner Zygi Wilf and coach Brad Childress have noticeably worked to improve the experience for fans.

>Robison adapting to Minnesota quickly
Rookie defensive end Brian Robison had a leg up on adapting to life in Minnesota.  He had formed a friendship with Tom Engwall, a former St. John’s University athlete while at Texas.  “Everybody from the South like I am has this idea about Minnesota,” Robison says in this St. Cloud Times story.  “We think when we come up here, all we're going to see is snow.  But he told me it was a lot different from I thought it was and that there was a lot to do here, especially if you're an outdoors person, which I am.”

>Rice helps lift the level of excitement
The arrival of rookie Sidney Rice has helped raise the level of excitement at training camp according to offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell.  Rice is getting every possible chance to crack the top three in the wide receiver rotation.  “He can go up and get it,” veteran Bobby Wade tells the Mankato Free Press in this report.  “He’s going to be a good player, this year and in the future.”

>Williamson has worked too hard not to improve
Third-year receiver Troy Williamson caught 37 passes for 455 yards last season, but he officially dropped 11.  It’s no secret he’s worked his tail off to overcome the dropsies this offseason.  “Everything's going to pan out, because I worked too hard in the off-season not to have a good year,” Williamson says in this report.  “I'm going to come in and do what I got to do as a receiver to make myself better.”

>Doss featured in Jet Magazine
Vikings safety Mike Doss is featured in the July 30 issue of Jet magazine.  The story is about what NFL players do in the summer and how it’s more work than play.  Much of Doss’ last two summers have been spent working on the documentary 110 feet:  The Journey.  “It's an honor to be recognized by an historic publication like Jet magazine,” Doss told the Canton Rep.  “I know I speak for most in the NFL who want to be known as more than football players.  This feature helps to accomplish that goal, and I am proud to be a part of it.”

>Birk lets it grow out
Center Matt Birk has a thicker head of hair than usual, the result, he said, of not getting a cut since last December.

>The upside of not extending Williams?
This AOL Fanhouse story on the Vikings not re-signing veteran Pat Williams to a huge contract extension mostly weighs in on the side of the team, saying that in the NFL “you get paid for future production, not what you’ve done in the past.”

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