Friday, March 27, 2015

Monthly Archives: May 2012

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Nothing makes me like a Vikings article more than when I get to end and I say to myself, “damn it, why didn’t I write something that cool?”

That’s when I know I found something I have to share with the rest of you.

Now, as you have already gathered, this is a stadium related article I’m about to point you towards.  If you are like me, you are more than a tad stadiumed out and have grown tired of the dry accounts of the daily “twists” and “turns” and perhaps have even grown tired of the endless attempts at humor and wit regarding the situation.  This article involves none of the above.

I had never heard of Grantland.com (apparently a Bill Simmons offshoot of ESPN), or writer Steve Marsh, until today.  However, Mr. Marsh has produced an account of the stadium bill’s rise to certainty in an article that will fit quite nicely with the group of readers we have here at VT.

The article is entitled “The House That Christian Ponder Built” and I strongly encourage you to go to the bathroom, grab a high quality root beer, and settle in to read it.  Click right here for the full article.

It is bar none the best stadium article I have read ever.

I have been pretty critical over the last two years of the Vikings trade forwards in the 2010 NFL Draft to select running back Toby Gerhart.

With Adrian Peterson being one of this offseason’s biggest question marks, however, it is comforting to know that the Vikings have such a quality option to lean on if Peterson needs a limited role, or if they need a full time starter.

“I’m just preparing to be the guy,” Gerhart said of the situation. “I try to do that every year, but this year it’s a little more prevalent. I’m doing everything I can to be here, work hard, work with the new guys we have coming in, pushing everybody and getting pushed by other guys. Preparing to be the guy, depending on whether Adrian comes back.”

Gerhart has six career starts, with five of them coming last season, and his numbers are nothing to scoff at.  Over 109 attempts Gerhart averaged 4.9 yards per carry, and also grabbed 23 passes for 190 yards and three touchdowns.  Despite last season’s increased in touches, he improved upon the fumbling issues that worried us in his rookie season, and only fumbled once last season.

“I feel I’ve been able to work through it pretty nicely,” Gerhart said of his own, less serious knee injury from last year. “Coming back, it’s getting better and better, just rehabbing the last few months. Got out here for a little bit; being back out here taking care of it, and its feeling good running around.”

Despite Gerhart’s favorable numbers from last season, he said he sees plenty of room for improvement and will work on these items throughout OTA’s and training camp.

“For me, I’d like to be a little more agile in the second level,” he said.  “There were a couple of times coming through, about six to seven yards, if I can make a safety miss, it can be a bigger gain. Working on my feet a little bit, getting a little quicker, little shiftier left to right.”

Whether or not Gerhart gets his full time gig for any period of time remains to be seen.  Peterson not only seems hell bent on being back for week one of the regular season, but he even describes himself as “50-50” for training camp.

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On Thursday, the Minneapolis City Council held a vote on the Vikings stadium bill.

It wasn’t the vote that makes their commitment official, that will come tomorrow, but it still seems to hold a majority support by a count of seven to six.

The six opponents of the bill seemed to sense the inevitability of its passage, but that did not stop them from making some very strong statements about what amounts to, in their assessment, fiscal irresponsibility on the City’s part that subsidizes a billionaire’s ability to get richer.

“To me this is a very sad day for our city,” said Councilwoman Lisa Goodman.

“I don’t like making rich guys richer,” expressed Councilman Don Samuels. “But in this case, while the rich get richer, the poor will get richer too.”

“I just think this is a deal that generations to come will criticize us for,” Councilman Gary Schiff stated.

The City is on the hook for $150 million in construction costs and another $159 million in operating costs over the course of the stadium’s life.  Construction is expected to begin in the spring of next year.

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Well, as if we needed another completely dull and unfulfilling storyline to follow, it appears our young franchise quarterback may have just got himself wrapped up in a yet-to-come (but probably soon-to-come) investigation of the people currently representing him.

Yay?

I’ll just go ahead and defer to Riley Schmitt of Rant Sports for all the details:

Kohl Stewart was just your average high school recruit until Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder texted him.  Stewart was so excited about the text that he uploaded it to Twitter.  Unfortunately for him, it might cause him a lot of trouble.

Ponder said he was texting Kohl Stewart on behalf of the CAA. The CAA is also known as the Creative Arts Agency, which is a grouping of sports agents. Now why would Ponder be texting a high schooler about an agency? The kid has not even stepped on a college football field, much less thought about an agency.

Then again, this could easily be someone posing as Ponder and texting Kohl Stewart. It’s unlikely, but possible. The area code is one that is found in the suburbs of the Twin Cities so I would guess it is Ponder.

In the world of social media, Kohl Stewart may have just exposed some dirty practices by the CAA. I am not sure why they had Ponder text him, but I would guess it would be to have Stewart consider being represented by the agency. Then again, the NCAA tends to frown upon agents contacting college players.

Kohl Stewart seemed excited that he was being texted by a pro quarterback but this is going to raise some serious questions about the CAA. It is getting a lot harder for agencies to contact players. Why not use pro players to convince kids to sign with you? It’d be a good theory if you thought you would never get exposed.

I have a feeling Kohl Stewart is going to find himself in the middle of a controversy. Once the NCAA and others find out about this, it probably will not be pretty.

On the plus side, we all now have the first seven digits of Ponder’s personal cell.

This hasn’t been the most exciting week in the world of Vikings football, but I’ve always thought that in the least active portions of the offseason no news is good news.  Despite the lack of news, I have once again set out to scrounge up some reading material to occupy your work day.

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