VU Daily Blog: 6/14/10

The Vikings are officially adding to their roster (and subtracting), fans overwhelmingly see them as a playoff team, Sidney Rice might have the best hands in the business and more. See all the Vikings news and speculation as it progressed through the VU Daily Blog.

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Posted on Twitter at: 9:39:00 PM
NFL Transaction Wire Blog (6/14-6/20): Several veterans signed their RFA tenders before Monday evening's deadline,... http://bit.ly/agSpsq

Posted by: Tim Yotter
on Monday, June 14, 2010 at 1:50:00 PM

Holy hands: Rice catches nearly everything

Sidney Rice has displayed great hands for years, but it took three years for fans to really see the benefit of it. In his first two seasons, Rice was battling a few different injuries.

Last year, he was finally healthy and made the Pro Bowl. Why? He has a big frame, for sure, but he also has great hands – the best in the business over the last two years, according to Football Outsiders.

The statistical analysis site tracked how many times a player was the target of a pass and how many times they made the catch. According to Football Outsiders' stats, the fluctuation from one year to the next was high in their "drop rate" category, but Rice led all receivers over the last two years, dropping just 1.3 percent of the passes in which he was targeted. Free-agent running back Brian Westbrook led all backs at 0.9 percent.

One other tangential Vikings connection in the Football Outsiders study was Darius Heyward-Bey, the former first-round pick of the Raiders who was often compared to former Vikings first-round pick Troy Williamson. Both have been criticized for bad hands and Heyward-Bey lived up to that reputation. He was second in the league in drop rate at 17.1 percent. No Vikings were among the 10 highest in drop rate last year.

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Posted on Twitter at: 12:23:00 PM
Edwards, Triplett sign; six Vikings released: Ray Edwards and Nate Triplett joined the ranks of Vikings under cont... http://bit.ly/aOanrW

Posted on Twitter at: 11:37:00 AM
Lots of post-minicamp roster action for the #Vikings RT @VikingUpdate: VU Daily Blog: Triplett signs, six released http://bit.ly/9oVaop

Posted by: Tim Yotter
on Monday, June 14, 2010 at 11:35:00 AM

Triplett signs, six released

The signing of Ray Edwards forced the Vikings to make at least one roster move, but there was an additional signing as well – fifth-round draft pick Nate Triplett also signed his contract, according to Vikings.com.

That meant the Vikings had to release at least two players in order to get their roster down to the offseason maximum of 80 players under contract. After seeing the majority of the rookies at their minicamp and organized team activities, they elected to make even more moves.

The Vikings waived undrafted rookies Eddie Adamski (center), Matt Hanson (tackle), Aaron Rhea (a wide receiver who wasn't able to practice all weekend because of an injury), Angelo Williams (cornerback) and Marlon Winn (tackle). They also waived running back James Johnson, who was with the Bengals last year.

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Posted on Twitter at: 11:15:00 AM
#Vikings DE Ray Edwards is now officially under contract. RT @VikingUpdate: VU Daily Blog: Edwards signs his tender http://bit.ly/9oVaop

Posted by: Tim Yotter
on Monday, June 14, 2010 at 11:12:00 AM

Edwards signs his tender

Vikings DE Ray Edwards has officially signed his restricted free-agent tender, according to Vikings.com.

VikingUpdate.com had a story on Edwards' situation this morning, explaining the timing and salary involved in his decision to sign.

Edwards had to sign his tender by June 15 or the Vikings could have dropped their offer to 110 percent of his 2009 salary, which would have meant about a $1.4 million loss when compared to his tender offer, which was $2.521 million.

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Posted by: Tim Yotter
on Monday, June 14, 2010 at 10:20:00 AM

Childress headed for USO Persian Gulf tour

Vikings coach Brad Childress will be joining several other NFL coaches on an NFL-USO Coaches Tour to the Persian Gulf.

Childress' son Andrew joined the Marines last winter and was deployed to the Middle East in May.

"Since my son has enlisted in the Marine Corps, I have learned a new appreciation for the freedoms we all enjoy and take for granted," Childress said in a statement released by the NFL. "Our armed forces are the most highly-skilled, best-trained men and women in the world. Their character is on display on a daily basis. … We all owe them a debt of gratitude and this trip is a small way of saying thank you."

Childress will be joined by Panthers head coach John Fox (whose father was a Navy Seal), Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis and Eagles head coach Andy Reid, a good friend and former colleague of Childress. They will spend several days in the Persian Gulf.

"This trip is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," Reid said. "The dedication and passion that these men and women display for our country is inspiring. I consider each and every one of them heroes. They sacrifice a lot of the comforts of their homeland and family life to serve our country to the fullest. To be able to spend time with them during their tour of duty is an honor."

The NFL has sent coaches and players to visits troops overseas for more than 40 years, starting in 1966 when a group of players went to Vietnam. Since then, the NFL-USO tours have made stops in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Iraq, Japan, Korea, Kuwait and Somalia. In March, Vernon Davis, Joe Thomas, Mario Williams and Jason Witten spent a week in Afghanistan and Qatar visiting the troops.

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Posted by: Tim Yotter
on Monday, June 14, 2010 at 10:00:00 AM

NFL fans see Vikings as a playoff team

The opinions on the Vikings for 2010 seem to vary greatly. Peter King of Sports Illustrated had the Vikings on the playoff bubble at No. 13, which would mean they would miss the playoffs, and he had the Packers rated as the best team in the league.

NFL fans would seem to disagree, in large numbers.

Only 15 percent of the more than 120,000 fans that are voting in an online poll on NFL.com believe the Vikings will fall short of the playoffs. Asked "How will the Vikings fare in 2010?" 15 percent said they would win Super Bowl XLV. More than 50,000 voters – or 43 percent – said the Vikings would win the division and make a deep playoff run, and 28 percent believed they would earn a wild-card berth.

The votes are piling in on the poll, but as of 10 a.m. Monday morning, those were the results.

Online polls aren't always the greatest overview of real public opinion, but it would seem the vast majority of NFL fans believe the Vikings are headed for the playoffs again this year.

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Posted on Twitter at: 7:30:00 AM
Sage's saga continues: Sage Rosenfels came to Minnesota hoping to become the starter. Instead, it's looking like h... http://bit.ly/aWGR5I

Posted on Twitter at: 7:30:00 AM
Lewis a consummate veteran among young WRs: Greg Lewis made a huge initial impression, but the rest of his first s... http://bit.ly/dacVmq

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