Tuesday, June 27, 2017

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Day 7 Practice
Image courtesy of Chris Price

This morning’s training camp feed was rather uneventful, but that should change this afternoon. The Minnesota Vikings take the field for another practice to close out the week.

Multiple bloggers, reporters, and Vikings Territory writers are in Mankato, where they’re firing off tweets at breakneck speed. Today’s practice comes a week before Minnesota’s first preseason game of the year, a matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals. Joint practices begin on August 10 before the teams meet on Friday, August 12.

Enough about next week, though; it’s time for training camp practice!

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start at center
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The most interesting battle of Vikings training camp is, to me, at center. You know the story; John Sullivan, while never a Pro Bowler, was widely considered one of the top centers in football before the two back surgeries that sidelined him for all of 2015. In his stead, Joe Berger—to that point a utility lineman, used mostly as a backup and spot starter—played not only admirably but at times dominantly, and was (if I may) the lone bright spot on the offensive line last season. He was Pro Football Focus’ second-highest rated center, grading significantly better than household names like Mike Pouncey, Alex Mack, and Max Unger.

So now the dilemma: assuming Sullivan is healthy (and signs point to “yes” in that regard), who starts?

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Day 7 Walk-Thru
Image courtesy of Chris Price

Hello again live-blogging community! I’m jumping back into the mix or the first time since free agency, and I’m looking forward to another exciting day of Minnesota Vikings football.

Adam Patrick’s been rocking these posts for the past week, but he’s getting much-deserved rest today. Follow along as we bring you all of the latest updates from Mankato, including reports from our very own Brent LaBathe and Andy Carlson.

Mankato Vikings Training Camp

Random thoughts running through my head while at Vikings Training Camp. Apologies in advance.

1. Mankato is very chill. I always love the vibe of college towns (Kato is similar to Winona where I went to college) and you can tell that the city really ramps up for the Vikings to come down. It’s essentially their town celebration. You know how every small town has a get-together/fair during the summer where the funnel cake carts pop up out of nowhere and the carneys show up with those rickety rides and rigged games on flatbeds? Well this is Mankato’s. The threat of Vikings Training Camp moving to the new facilities in Eagan when their contract is up after 2018 is real (the Vikings also hold an option to have camp in Mankato in 2019), but I’m rooting for it to stay in the Crown Jewel of South Central Minnesota. It’s like ‘End of Summer Camp’ for the fans.

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Mankato Minnesota Vikings Training Camp

On the ground in Mankato. Some AM showers rolled over the Crown Jewel of South Central Minnesota Thursday morning, but it didn’t stop the Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings from taking the field for walkthroughs. It also didn’t stop me from rounding up Arif Hasan (@ArifHasanNFL), Sam Ekstrom (@SamEkstrom) and Eric Thompson (@Eric_J_Thompson) at the media center and playing a quick NAME GAME.

Names Include:
• Jayron Kearse
• Willie Beavers
• Matt Kalil
• Tre Roberson
• Charles Johnson
• Matt Kalil
• Tom Johnson
• Brian Jerome Robison
• Mortiz Boehringer
• TJ Clemmings
• Laquon Treadwell
• Chad Greenway
• Jeff Locke

All that and other “How You Gonna Get Fired on Your Day Off?” chatter on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint

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