Jackson: ‘A lot of work to do'

Vikings quarterback Tarvaris Jackson will start Friday's second preseason game, but he admitted he needs to improve from his performance in the preseason opener. How much of that can be blamed on working with the second team? Jackson and Bevell commented on that, and we have other updates from Monday's practice.

Tarvaris Jackson will start Friday's second preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs, but he knows all too well that he has to improve.

"I've got a lot of work to do. Just trying to get better, little small things, little details. Just watching, there weren't a lot of necessarily bad things, but just things I can get better at," Jackson said, proving a list of things to improve. "Footwork, right reading, patting the football, taking my checkdown sometimes when it's there. Down and distance."

Jackson and Sage Rosenfels currently are embroiled in a competition for the starting job, but Rosenfels had his foot stepped on during a play in Friday's game and appeared to injure his ankle. He didn't come out of the game, but he hasn't practiced since.

Jackson was going to get the start this Friday either way, but Rosenfels' injury could allow Jackson even more repetitions with the first-team offense. That's something he definitely welcomes because of the familiarity factor.

"These guys, we know each other. Mostly everyone in there has been on this team for a while now," Jackson said. "The younger guys' heads are kind of swirling a little bit; the adrenaline is probably rushing a little bit because of the first game. It was a little different for those guys, but I understand that because I've been through that before. There's a lot more continuity with the offense when all the veterans are in there. No matter who I'm in there with, I just try to do my best."

The preseason opener wasn't his best.

While Rosenfels was 10 of 13 for 91 yards, Jackson competed only 7 of 15 passes for 39 yards. Rosenfels registered a 95.4 passer rating; Jackson had a 53.5.

But offensive coordinator Darrel Bevell admitted that Jackson had a few plays "sabotaged" by non-starters running the wrong routes.

"There was a couple times out there where he had guys not doing what they should be doing, so it kind of sabotaged him a little bit at times," Bevell said. "He brought some of the mistakes on himself as well, but we expect to put him out there on Friday and see how he does. We expect him to raise his level and make it a tough decision on us."

Taking the first-team snaps at Monday's practice, there could be no blaming the non-starters for a couple of near interceptions that Jackson threw on back-to-back plays. On the first one, safety Tyrell Johnson saw the pass coming and stepped in front of TE Visanthe Shiancoe but dropped what should have been an interception. On the next play, Jackson attempted to connect with RB Adrian Peterson and Antoine Winfield should have intercepted that pass.

Eliminating turnovers was the first thing Jackson mentioned when asked about his goals against Kansas City this week.

"Obviously, I don't want to turn the football over. That's just a goal every day I come on the field. Make the right reads, quick decisions and the right decisions. That's pretty much it," he said.


The Vikings aren't speculating on the severity of the injury, but defensive end Jared Allen limped off the field during Monday afternoon's practice with an injury to his right ankle. No further details were immediately available.


Quarterback Sage Rosenfels, WR Bernard Berrian, TE Garrett Mills and TE Jim Kleinsasser were among the players who didn't take part in the full-team portion of practice on Monday.

Rosenfels was out for the stretching portion of practice and played catch during some one-on-one drills, but he went to the locker room before the full-team portion of practice.

Mills missed Friday's game after also missing practice last Wednesday, when he was seen with his arm in a sling. He wasn't wearing a sling Monday and appeared for the first part of practice but didn't participate.

Kleinsasser's status is unknown, but the Vikings signed TE Jake Nordin on Sunday.


  • Percy Harvin continued to work on fielding kickoffs, as did Jaymar Johnson. Harvin didn't play Friday because of a shoulder injury, but he didn't appear to be limited on Monday.

  • Center John Sullivan continued to practice with his left ankle taped and Tarvaris Jackson continued to wear a wrap on his left knee. Jackson said he feels much better about his mobility this week.

  • Jackson connected with WR Jaymar Johnson on two nicely thrown deep passes during offensive drills.

  • During full-team work, LB Kenny Onatolu had a touch sack of John David Booty.

  • Rookie safety Jamarca Sanford got some second-team work at safety alongside Husain Abdullah.

  • DT Jimmy Kennedy also got some reps with the second-team defense.

  • CB Cedric Griffin put a big hit on Nick Moore after the receiver went up to catch a Booty pass.

  • Rookie CB Asher Allen made a nice diving pass breakup down the left sideline on a Jackson pass intended for Johnson.

  • Ryan Cook received some first-team work at right tackle, along with second-team work at right guard and center.

  • CB Benny Sapp intercepted a Booty passes intended for Darius Reynaud.

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