Start Spreading the News

The Vikings go on the road for the first time this year to take on the New York Jets and quarterback Chad Pennington. The Jets were a surprise playoff entrant under new head coach Eric Mangini last year and the Vikings will have their work cut out for them as the starters play a full half against the J-Men.

Now it gets interesting.

After a first preseason game in which the starters were off the field after just three series on offense and defense, the Vikings are going to give their starting unit a full half of action tonight when the team goes on the road to play the Jets.

A couple of exceptions to that rule could be Tarvaris Jackson and Chester Taylor. Brad Childress announced Wednesday that he plans to play each of his quarterbacks one quarter – Jackson in the first, Brooks Bollinger in the second, Drew Henson in the third and Tyler Thigpen in the fourth. Taylor is likely to get more than the one carry he had in the first preseason game against the Rams, but he likely won't get overused. Childress has said Taylor is a known commodity and he's not looking to risk any injuries in the preseason to a valued running back. Last year, without the competition of Adrian Peterson, Taylor only had nine carries in the preseason.

The Jets are a 2006 playoff team that was neither dominant on offense nor defense, but have a lot of players that know their roles and do the little things to make the team better. They remind some of the Patriots team that made the first of its Super Bowl runs, making them a solid opponent for the Vikings to gauge their progress.

While many find preseason games boring, the first units didn't take any steps backwards vs. the Rams. Tonight vs. the Jets with an entire half expected from most of the starters, we'll have a much better handle of where the team is at.

* The Vikings defense won't have to face former Bear Thomas Jones tonight. The running back suffered a strained calf in training camp and is expected to miss two weeks.
* The Vikes are 1-4 all-time vs. the Jets in the preseason.
* The punting battle between Chris Kluwe and Alex Reyes will resume tonight. Neither punter performed all that well in the opener vs. the Rams.
* The Jets finally signed first-round draft pick Darrelle Revis, but he isn't expected to see much, if any, action tonight.
* Former Vikings defensive tackle Fred Robbins, who has been slowed in Giants training camp because of a calf injury, with start Sunday against the Ravens.
* Packers wide receiver Robert Ferguson is going to hit the open market sooner than later. On Thursday, coach Mike McCarthy said that Ferguson won't be a part of the team in 2007.

Viking Update Top Stories