Friday, January 30, 2015

Monthly Archives: June 2014

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According to Mike Freeman at Bleacher Report (formerly of CBS Sports), he’s getting wind of a possible release of the report on the allegations Chris Kluwe raised against special teams coordinator Mike Priefer:

This is honestly better sooner rather than later. Were it released a week before training camp, it would put a pall over the camp and give a little less time for the coaches to react to any changes they’ll be forced to make.

In all likelihood, the Vikings coaching staff has contingency plans in place for whatever the outcome, but giving them lead time before camp would be optimal from a football perspective.

For a perspective on the potential legal ramifications of this incident, take a look here.

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The announcement of Training Camp dates and a rough schedule by the Vikings is about as much news as any NFL organization hopes to release at this time of year, fingers crossed that there isn’t much more to report on the team. For fans, this can be kind of boring, as a dead space in football coverage, even in the offseason, is rare and annoying to deal with. Fortunately, that dead space is coming to a close soon with the arrival of training camp less than a month away.

Along with that news comes some great site news: Vikings Territory has been given media credentials for the duration of camp! That means daily coverage of the camp battles, player interviews and coach pressers, with different types of coverage provided by the different writers who will be able to attend.

Those who are familiar with my work from the past know that I keep extensive 5,000-word notebooks, published daily (or near-daily) at the Daily Norseman. That won’t change, but all player features and updates from coaches will be kept here at Vikings Territory. Any insight on the quarterback battle, the linebacker depth chart or other grossly inaccurate speculation can be found at VT from me and others.

I’ll keep you updated with who can go when, but expect an appearance from Lindsey partway through camp. We may be able to grab some insight from Brett and Adam, too!

The one thing I ask from you all is help getting there. Since becoming a full-time blogger, I’ve been able to cover all my personal expenses but will have difficult extending them to cover additional expenses. I’ve set up a GoFundMe page where you can donate to help pay for the costs of attending and covering training camp.

As detailed on the page, we’re looking to hit $3200 to cover my time at camp—mostly lodging at the hotel nearest camp. Other moneys will be used to help cover some of the costs of others giving up work to go and a charity that Adam will tell you about very soon but one that is close to him. If you want to earmark your donation so that it is split up a different way than is outlined on the GoFundMe page, feel free to mark your donation as private and leave a comment splitting up your donation how you see fit.

Everyone who donates $25.00 or more will receive (if they want) a printed training camp guide written by me with extensive scouting reports on every single player, “what to watch for” at camp and the organizational philosophy surrounding different approaches to training camps. You should receive those a week before camp.

For the past two years, I’ve provided what I believe to be the consistently best coverage at an NFL training camp in the country. I want to continue to do the same thing, but I need your help to do it. Last year, I was able to extend my stay at training camp after many insisted I run a fundraising drive and I was able to do it through a mix of small and large donations—all of which helped me out. Hopefully, I can do the same.

This is very exciting news for VT and I thank you for your help in getting there.

This isn’t normally the time of year when we have a lot to discuss regarding the Vikings.  With a new coaching staff comes plenty of intrigue and speculation, however, and we have plenty of items to read about this week.

Check them out and let them know who sent you:

 

When the Minnesota Vikings selected Virginia Tech defensive back Antone Exum with the 182nd pick in the 2014 NFL draft, some pundits said he just might be the steal of the draft.

Justin Cates, Associate Editor of SB Nation’s Gobbler Country who covers the Virginia Tech Hokies, said Exum is a first or second round talent but injuries dropped him into the final day of the draft.

“Exum’s natural fit is at safety, though he played well during his junior season at corner. He likes to hit guys and he has good ball skills, but he proved to be a little too stiff compared to the top corners in the game. Look at Kendall Fuller’s hips and then watch Exum and you will see what I mean. Still he’s a safety that can cover and he’s a pretty good tackler who can help in support against the run.”

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With great popularity comes great responsibility… or something like that.

For whatever reason, the NFL seems to be a mainstream battleground for social debate fairly constantly these days, and this offseason seems to really be amassing the headlines of this nature.  Whether it be the wrongful termination accusations of Chris Kluwe, the domestic abuse case with Ray Rice, the draft placement of Michael Sam, the double standard that exists between player and owner conduct, or the offensive nickname of one football franchise.

As far as I can remember, I have never once written about that last topic, as the Washington Redskins nickname is not really Vikings related and this is a Vikings blog.  Minnesota Congresswoman Betty McCollum found an intelligent way to raise awareness of the issue in Minnesota, however, and dropped a call for action squarely at the feet of Vikings owner Zygi Wilf.

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