Winfield camp holdout a long shot?

Pro Bowl cornerback Antoine Winfield wants a contract extension and stayed away from the offseason practices, so will he hold out of training camp to further make his point?

Unhappy that contract negotiations with the Vikings broke down this spring, Antoine Winfield failed to take part in any of the team's offseason practices. Officially, he missed the mandatory three-day minicamp so he could attend the funeral for the mother of a close friend.

So will the veteran cornerback show his unhappiness by staying away from training camp? That seems like a long shot. Winfield is heading into the final season of a six-year, $34.8 million deal and is scheduled to make $6 million in 2009.

"There is way too much time for me or Antoine to even think of anything like" a holdout, agent Ashanti Webb said. "As of right now, that option has not been discussed at all. The thing that needs to be crystal clear is Antoine is not making any demands or threats or anything like that."

Winfield finds himself in an interesting situation.

He is coming off the first Pro Bowl appearance of his 10-year career, but recently turned 32 years old. The Vikings certainly could have concerns about giving Winfield a long-term deal when his value as a top-line corn could be limited.

While Winfield is frustrated by the situation, Webb said that he is again having dialogue with the Vikings.

"At this point right now, the Vikings and I have had talks," Webb said. "There have been discussions. It would be disingenuous or inappropriate for me to say there is any kind of hard (deadline for this to get done). ... I'm an optimist. They have not said to me, ‘We're not doing something.' I'm not saying, ‘We're at such grave differences that I'm telling them to forget it.'

"We're talking. Not talking that much, but there are discussions. You haven't heard any (verbal) jabs from either one of us. ... I think in the realm of these situations this has been hospitable."

CAMP CALENDAR: The Vikings will report to training camp in Mankato, Minn., on July 29 and begin practices on July 31. Training camp will break after practice on Aug. 12. Night practices will be held in Mankato on Aug. 1 and Aug. 7, but there are no scrimmages scheduled.


  • The Vikings have signed fifth-round linebacker Jasper Brinkley and seventh-round safety Jamarca Sanford to four-year contracts but still must agree to terms with first-round wide receiver Percy Harvin, second-round right tackle Phil Loadholt and third-round cornerback Asher Allen.

  • Green Bay wide receiver Greg Jennings, who caught Brett Favre's NFL-record setting 421st touchdown pass against the Vikings two years ago, doesn't seem too concerned about his former teammate playing in Minnesota.

    "I don't care," Jennings said of the prospect of Favre joining the Vikings. "I'm like, ‘Let him go.' To each his own. We're focused on what we're doing in Green Bay and if he shows up in that purple jersey then he's the enemy now."

  • The fact that WR Percy Harvin missed the NFL's four-day rookie symposium in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., means he likely is going to have to attend the event next year. Harvin showed up at the symposium but had to leave because of illness.

    QUOTE TO NOTE: "Brett is a competitor. But I know towards the latter part of my career, even though I still wanted to be on that football field, it was like things became a little bit more difficult. But my job was different. It consisted of a lot of running and stuff like that. With Brett, the thing for him is dropping back, planting himself and throwing the ball downfield so it might be a little bit different for him. But he's a competitor. I think if he still wants to play, I think he should. But I really thought this team would be moving and looking down the road instead of trying to look for the one-year miracle." — Former NFL wide receiver and future Hall of Famer Jerry Rice when asked about Brett Favre potentially playing for the Vikings and whether the quarterback can still perform at a high level.

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