Saturday, February 6, 2016

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I know, I know… you’re sick of Adrian Peterson, the drama surrounding him, and our inability to not post about it. As true as that might be for a lot of you, I can promise you that we are not exactly enjoying this particular storyline, and we’ll have a very special article posted Friday morning that will be a great chance to take a break from the Peterson nonsense.

Seriously, you’ll want to be here tomorrow morning to witness one of the best, if not the best, articles we’ve ever posted here at VT.

In the meantime, our star running back took to Twitter Thursday afternoon to vent some frustrations and the result was a cyclone of speculation spewing venom in just about every possible direction.

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Last month we looked at some offensive players and predicted stat leaders, so now we’ll dive into the defensive end of the field.

Which Players Will Lead the Vikings in Sacks for the 2015 Season? 

Adam: Everson Griffen
Everson Griffen was the leader in 2014 and it wasn’t even close. The Vikings did a lot to help their defense this offseason, particularly in the Draft, but none of those additions should do anything other than help Griffen’s pass rushing production. While the defensive tackles and linebackers will rotate to stay fresh, the pass rushing attack will again center around Griffen who might find himself in a position to be even more aggressive in 2015. Health has a ton to do with it, and Anthony Barr might take a huge step forwards, but I still see this season ending with Griffen as the sack champ of Minnesota.

Andy: Anthony Barr
Conventional wisdom says Everson Griffen will lead the way and continue to build on last year’s coming out party of 12.0 sacks, but I’m going to bet on youth and Anthony Barr. He’s a physical specimen heading into only his fourth year of playing defense and second under Mike Zimmer. Barr started slow his rookie year, but picked up a lot of steam before getting injured and finishing the season with only 4.0 sacks. I think a full-offseason and a year of good health could not only double that number, but possibly triple or quadruple.

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One interesting little tidbit out of the earliest days of 2015’s practices is that one Vikings lineman has not only shifted positions, but he’s now playing on the opposite side of the line of scrimmage.

Undrafted last year, Isame Faciane was signed by the Vikings and defensive line coach Andre Patterson (who coached Faciane at Florida International) said he was among the top ten percent of defensive linemen he has ever worked with.

Now, however, it will be offensive line coach Jeff Davidson who tries to make an NFL player out of Faciane, it appears.

Faciane, listed at 6′ 4″ and 302 pounds, has reportedly opened organized team activities (OTA’s) at the right guard position which is a complete switch for him.

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Go Vikings.

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The silence has been broken.

Adrian Peterson, who will not be attending the Vikings’ OTAs this week, released the following statement to ESPN’s Josina Anderson:

“The reason I’m not attending OTAs has nothing to do with wanting to be traded. It’s about securing my future with the Vikings. It’s business, not personal and I understand that firsthand. Go Vikings.”

Earlier this week, reports surfaced that Peterson wanted to be traded from the team, and his sole purpose for skipping OTAs was to send a message to the franchise. Head coach Mike Zimmer received that message loud and clear, addressing the rumors after this morning’s practice.

“He’s really got two choices. He can either play for us, or he can not play,” Zimmer told reporters after the Vikings’ second OTA. “He’s not going to play for anybody else, and that’s just the way it’s going to be.”

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