Monday, July 6, 2015

Monthly Archives: May 2012

As pointed out by The Viking Age, Sid Hartman recently stated that there is a “good chance” that middle linebacker E.J. Henderson re-signs with the Vikings this offseason.

Now, E.J. has been one of my favorite Vikings to watch for a number of years now (and I would love to still wear his jersey on game day without feeling silly), but even I wouldn’t have predicted that the elder Henderson somehow worked into the Vikings offseason plan of getting younger, healthier, and less expensive.

Jasper Brinkley might not fit the Tampa-2 scheme real great, as some media outlets have been quick to opine, but the right rotation of Brinkley, Erin Henderson and Chad Greenway could make them a very effective group.

Hartman writes that Henderson is not wavering from his demand to be paid the same as last season for his services, which would bring his salary in at $6.7 million.

That isn’t going to happen.  If it was, it already would have.

Henderson is on the wrong side of thirty, has had trouble staying on the field in consecutive seasons, and is a major liability in pass coverage.  If the Vikings planned to give that type of money to a veteran linebacker this offseason, that too would have already happened.

In fact, looking back at how the offseason has played, one of my only real complaints is that the Vikings didn’t pony up for a stud linebacker when they had the chance.  Stephen Tulloch (signed with Lions), Curtis Lofton (Saints), Dan Connor (Cowboys), and David Hawthorne (Seahawks) all could have been sure-fire upgrades at the linebacker position.

I like Brinkley’s potential, but the linebacker position is one to keep an eye on as the offseason progresses.

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Long gone (umm, I hope) are the dramatic twists and turns that came with a certain ex-Packer quarterback, a inflatable roof refusing to stay inflated, mysterious hip injuries, a cross dressing head coach, a left tackle who thought he was the third sister of the famous tennis playing Williams duo, and… well, you get the point.

Apparently, the current Vikings regime would like to keep it that way.

Judd Zulgad of 1500 ESPN reports that the Vikings have turned down, for the second year in a row, the chance to appear on HBO’s awesome series titled Hard Knocks.

While it would be a blast to have that much access to our beloved Vikings as they go through the rest of the offseason, it is easy to see why Leslie Frazier and the gang would prefer to remain under the radar and low key.

Other than perhaps some financial gain, I’m not sure any team that has appeared on a season of the show could point out any actual benefit to doing so.  However, we need not look any further than Rex Ryan to understand there are plenty of reasons not to do it.

So, if you are a cheapskate like yours truly, there is no immediate need to upgrade to a premium television service.

Yesterday I made a big deal out of the fact that the Vikings used their waiver power to land Harvard offensive tackle Kevin Murphy, grabbing him ahead of two other teams that put in a claim on him.

The headline ran said “Murphy Was A Wanted Man.”

As it turns out, I should have emphasized the past tense.

Apparently Murphy was unable to pass his physical with the Vikings so he was immediately waives by the team.  Also waived on Thursday was South Carolina defensive back C.C. Whitlock who was signed by the Vikings as an undrafted free agent soon after the Draft ended.

The Vikings currently have two vacant roster spots and it’ll be interesting to see how they fill them.  Signing a kicker could make for some minor drama while my eyes keep gravitating towards a few free agent runners that might fit the low risk and low cost mold that Spielman seems to covet.  And, yes, I am talking about Mewelde Moore.

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The Vikings have announced their training camp schedule and the most notable thing to pass along is that they plan to stay in Mankato for three weeks this year instead of two.

Usually the Vikings would go back to Winter Park for week three of training camp, but the ability to stay put is expected to be a welcomed change this year as players and coaches can stay in the nearby dorms and literally do nothing but focus on football every minute that they aren’t sleeping.

The elongated period of time is thought to be a result of the school’s lack of need for the dorm rooms and also frustration over Leslie Frazier’s decision to only hold camp in Mankato for 10 days last offseason.

The three week training camp is scheduled to start on July 26th and the team will soon be listing a full schedule of practice sessions.

The Vikings have made some fairly low level moves over the last few days, and the most intriguing is their decision to claim Harvard offensive lineman Kevin Murphy, which we mentioned yesterday.

Us fans are always on the lookout for training camp “sleepers” and signs point towards Murphy as a candidate to keep an eye on.  What signs?  Well, for starters, the Vikings weren’t the only team that wanted the young tackle after he was cut by the 49ers.

According to a Scout.com source, both the Detroit Lions and the Houston Texans put in a waiver claim on the 6’ 7” rookie.  So, it should at least be an encouraging sign that Rick Spielman wasn’t the only NFL G.M. that wanted this guy on the roster.

One of the most intriguing things about the remainder of this offseason will surely revolve around Spielman’s willingness to use his waiver priority (the Vikings are third) when other teams part ways with players.  Murphy is surely not the last guy that will join the Vikings via this route between now and the season opener.

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