Players Find Humor in Training Camp

It wasn't all work over the last three weeks of training camp. Head coach Brad Childress found a way to make players laugh by mixing in video bloopers during team meetings. Here are some of the players' favorite moments of levity from training camp.

Over the last three weeks, the Vikings have endured 31 practices outside and countless film sessions, but not all of the film sessions were hardcore football.

Head coach Brad Childress has had his assistant coaches and videographers on the lookout for practice film that entertains more than it informs. With more than 100 hours of practice in the books, there were bound to be some good bloopers in there and Childress wanted to use those moments to have players and coaches, including the head man, laugh at themselves and bring some humor to camp.

"I have said since spring time that this is a fun group to be around. You have those experiences at different times in coaching," Childress said about the camp interaction of the players. "They like each other. It doesn't mean that they won't compete with each other and they don't get irritated. Anytime you have 80 men together, guys can get a bur under their saddle about different things, but they like each other."

We asked several players for their funniest moments of training camp, and here is what they came up with, saving the best for last:

  • Center Johnson Sullivan enjoyed the practice clips of poor athleticism. "Every once in a while we get to see practice tapes of people falling over. Those are pretty funny," he said.

  • Cornerback Cedric Griffin especially enjoyed the clip of Robinson Henry, a minority scholarship intern under certified athletic trainer Eric Sugarman, trying to work with the players in a drill. "We were doing some DB (defensive back) drills over there and he had to play receiver," Griffin said. "He started running and maybe like his fifth step he took a tumble and just flipped over about four or five times, had a big grass stain on his shirt and we showed it in team meetings."

  • Rookie linebacker Erin Henderson took pleasure in seeing a veteran who enjoys making fun of people get some of his own medicine. "Coach has been showing us clips of people falling. Just when we go to team meetings, he's been showing us some different stuff. (On Tuesday), they showed Pat Williams doing a drill and as he started backpedalling he fell. They played it in slow motion. It's a really good team, some really good guys out here and there are some characters out here."

  • A few players talked about the assistant coaches still trying to act like athletes.

    "We have a lot of clips from coaches doing drills and they fall down. We had one in which Jimmie Johnson, the tight ends coach, was doing some stunt blocks and slipped," said safety Darren Sharper. "He about split his whole leg, doing like a full splits on the middle of field when he lost his footing. That was funny to see a big guy like that go down."

    Wide receiver Robert Ferguson also singled out the tight ends coach for providing his favorite humorous moment from the last three weeks at camp. "The funniest thing I saw had to be on the field during individual periods when the coaches consider themselves to be former athletes and there was a lot of mishaps out there. We happened to have that on film and we all watched that as a team. Let me tell you, that has to be one of the best laughs I've had in a long time watching those coaches," Ferguson said. "I would have to say Jimmie Johnson would have to be the funniest coach I've ever seen. He almost tore his abductor, his groin, his hip flexor and his hamstring all in one play. He was going against Jimmy Kleinsasser. Kleinsasser gave him a jab step and everything just went out of whack from that point."

  • Childress is also showing this year that he can laugh at himself, and a flight in a fighter jet in Duluth before training camp drew mention from at least two players. Safety Tyrell Johnson named that video clip as his favorite moment of camp levity.

    "Probably Coach Childress when he in that jet and he kept passing out because of the Gs," Johnson said.

    Wide receiver Bobby Wade seemed to especially enjoy that viewing.

    "The funniest thing was he showed a video tape of him, Brad Childress, in that jet. Oh my God, I almost passed out six times watching that. He showed us him passing out three or four times," Wade said, making a snoring sound to mimic Childress. "It was hilarious."

    Wade said Childress being able to laugh at himself helps make the players more at ease.

    "That makes a world of everybody feeling more comfortable. He understands that everybody is human and we're all working towards the same cause, same goal. I think that helps out a lot to see that personality from your coach," Wade said.

  • Not all of the players' favorite moments were from the film sessions. Matt Birk was able to laugh at the fans on one occasion.

    "One day I was coming over (to the practice fields) early in the afternoon," he explained. "All I hear was, ‘Tarvaris! Tarvaris! Tarvaris, will you sign?' I turn around and it was one of my teammates, but it wasn't Tarvaris," Birk said.

  • But it should come as no surprise that Pat Williams got one of the biggest laughs at the expense of other players. In fact, Williams loved being able to stick it to the players he battles against every practice.

    "All the offensive linemen in an elevator got stuck. They were all stuck in an elevator for about an hour. There were about nine of them in there. That was the funniest thing," Williams said. "I was laughing and that was the greatest thing ever! They were always going around hating on people, so that was the greatest thing ever!"

    Williams said it wasn't a power outage that caused the elevator to stop. No, it was something much bigger, probably about 3,000 pounds.

    "It was all their weight. They got stuck. The power was still on. (The weight) was way over the limit and I was glad," he said. "I was laughing when they got off. They were all scared like babies."

    So maybe there are some things the players will miss about training camp.




  • Viking Update Top Stories

    \r\n","mobileBody":"Over the last three weeks, the Vikings have endured 31 practices outside and countless film sessions, but not all of the film sessions were hardcore football.

    Head coach Brad Childress has had his assistant coaches and videographers on the lookout for practice film that entertains more than it informs. With more than 100 hours of practice in the books, there were bound to be some good bloopers in there and Childress wanted to use those moments to have players and coaches, including the head man, laugh at themselves and bring some humor to camp.

    \"I have said since spring time that this is a fun group to be around. You have those experiences at different times in coaching,\" Childress said about the camp interaction of the players. \"They like each other. It doesn't mean that they won't compete with each other and they don't get irritated. Anytime you have 80 men together, guys can get a bur under their saddle about different things, but they like each other.\"

    We asked several players for their funniest moments of training camp, and here is what they came up with, saving the best for last:

  • Center Johnson Sullivan enjoyed the practice clips of poor athleticism. \"Every once in a while we get to see practice tapes of people falling over. Those are pretty funny,\" he said.

  • Cornerback Cedric Griffin especially enjoyed the clip of Robinson Henry, a minority scholarship intern under certified athletic trainer Eric Sugarman, trying to work with the players in a drill. \"We were doing some DB (defensive back) drills over there and he had to play receiver,\" Griffin said. \"He started running and maybe like his fifth step he took a tumble and just flipped over about four or five times, had a big grass stain on his shirt and we showed it in team meetings.\"

  • Rookie linebacker Erin Henderson took pleasure in seeing a veteran who enjoys making fun of people get some of his own medicine. \"Coach has been showing us clips of people falling. Just when we go to team meetings, he's been showing us some different stuff. (On Tuesday), they showed Pat Williams doing a drill and as he started backpedalling he fell. They played it in slow motion. It's a really good team, some really good guys out here and there are some characters out here.\"

  • A few players talked about the assistant coaches still trying to act like athletes.

    \"We have a lot of clips from coaches doing drills and they fall down. We had one in which Jimmie Johnson, the tight ends coach, was doing some stunt blocks and slipped,\" said safety Darren Sharper. \"He about split his whole leg, doing like a full splits on the middle of field when he lost his footing. That was funny to see a big guy like that go down.\"

    Wide receiver Robert Ferguson also singled out the tight ends coach for providing his favorite humorous moment from the last three weeks at camp. \"The funniest thing I saw had to be on the field during individual periods when the coaches consider themselves to be former athletes and there was a lot of mishaps out there. We happened to have that on film and we all watched that as a team. Let me tell you, that has to be one of the best laughs I've had in a long time watching those coaches,\" Ferguson said. \"I would have to say Jimmie Johnson would have to be the funniest coach I've ever seen. He almost tore his abductor, his groin, his hip flexor and his hamstring all in one play. He was going against Jimmy Kleinsasser. Kleinsasser gave him a jab step and everything just went out of whack from that point.\"

  • Childress is also showing this year that he can laugh at himself, and a flight in a fighter jet in Duluth before training camp drew mention from at least two players. Safety Tyrell Johnson named that video clip as his favorite moment of camp levity.

    \"Probably Coach Childress when he in that jet and he kept passing out because of the Gs,\" Johnson said.

    Wide receiver Bobby Wade seemed to especially enjoy that viewing.

    \"The funniest thing was he showed a video tape of him, Brad Childress, in that jet. Oh my God, I almost passed out six times watching that. He showed us him passing out three or four times,\" Wade said, making a snoring sound to mimic Childress. \"It was hilarious.\"

    Wade said Childress being able to laugh at himself helps make the players more at ease.

    \"That makes a world of everybody feeling more comfortable. He understands that everybody is human and we're all working towards the same cause, same goal. I think that helps out a lot to see that personality from your coach,\" Wade said.

  • Not all of the players' favorite moments were from the film sessions. Matt Birk was able to laugh at the fans on one occasion.

    \"One day I was coming over (to the practice fields) early in the afternoon,\" he explained. \"All I hear was, ‘Tarvaris! Tarvaris! Tarvaris, will you sign?' I turn around and it was one of my teammates, but it wasn't Tarvaris,\" Birk said.

  • But it should come as no surprise that Pat Williams got one of the biggest laughs at the expense of other players. In fact, Williams loved being able to stick it to the players he battles against every practice.

    \"All the offensive linemen in an elevator got stuck. They were all stuck in an elevator for about an hour. There were about nine of them in there. That was the funniest thing,\" Williams said. \"I was laughing and that was the greatest thing ever! They were always going around hating on people, so that was the greatest thing ever!\"

    Williams said it wasn't a power outage that caused the elevator to stop. No, it was something much bigger, probably about 3,000 pounds.

    \"It was all their weight. They got stuck. The power was still on. (The weight) was way over the limit and I was glad,\" he said. \"I was laughing when they got off. They were all scared like babies.\"

    So maybe there are some things the players will miss about training camp.



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