Thursday, June 30, 2016

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Last Friday marked the start of “real” football for Vikings fans, as the team kicked off its rookie minicamp and welcomed 10 draft picks to Winter Park. There, they joined a handful of undrafted free agents to take part in on-field drills and media introductions.

Players like seventh-round pick Edmond Robinson used the weekend as a “proving ground” of sorts, showing coaches they belong on a 53-man roster. Others, like first-round pick Trae Waynes, spent their time absorbing an NFL playbook and refining their technique on the field. In reality, the weekend was a tease for what’s to come — training camp.

There, these young players will be tested beyond their expectations. Trae Waynes will be asked to cover veterans like Jarius Wright, while Eric Kendricks will find himself in coverage against Adrian Peterson and Jerick McKinnon. It won’t be easy, but it’ll provide coaches a true litmus test of their rookies’ abilities on the field.

After the jump, a look at other notable rookies around the NFC North!:

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Vikings Territory grades every individual, Vikings selection of the 2015 NFL Draft and provides an overall grade for this year's class.

It’s been over a week since the conclusion of the 2015 NFL Draft – time enough for most to settle in with their feelings on how the Vikings faired. We’ve shared the thoughts of other “draft experts” on how the Vikings 2015 draft class ranks but thought we should go on the record with our own individual grades, both collectively and individually.

I know there are some who believe trying to grade a draft class before any of them have taken the field is a futile endeavor. Well, it goes without saying that this is all educated speculation. I mean, we never really know for a fact how any player is going to turn out, but that doesn’t stop us from creating big boards and ranking them. We don’t know which teams are going to draft who (usually), but that doesn’t stop us from taking the information we have to make an informed guess. We don’t ever know how an upcoming season is going to pan out in the Summer months, but that doesn’t stop us from making predictions. My point is: none of this is definitive, but that doesn’t mean it’s a meaningless exercise. The alternative is just saying “Hey, it’s way too early for me to make any assumptions on how this draft class will turn out,” and leaving it at that.

But, really? That’s no fun, is it?

So on to the grades:  Every staff member of Vikings Territory was polled for their personal grades for each individual selection. These grades were then converted to numbers on your typical GPA scale and averaged out per player. The individual player grades were then averaged out, with more weight being given to earlier round selections, to create a consensus, overall draft grade for Vikings Territory.

Let’s start with individual selection grades. I asked our writers to provide a brief explanation to accompany their grade if they happened to be the highest or lowest grade for that player. Although, there were some instances where there were no “low grades” or “high grades” and, in those cases, explanations were omitted.

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Photo Courtesy of Ashley Davis

There is no offseason in the NFL. Which means there’s no offseason for Purple FTW! Tom Shefchik (@Shefonomics), co-editor of Sporting Sota, joins us to talk Vikings and what’s new and different at SS. No shortage of Vikings news: Rookie Mini Camp happened over the weekend, Teddy took a high school girl to prom, and Jerry Jones refuses to let his Adrian dream die.

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Anytime you talk about adding weapons around Teddy Bridgewater, my ears perk up. That’s exactly what GM Rick Spielman accomplished by selecting TE MyCole Pruitt with the 143rd overall pick in the 5th round of the 2015 NFL draft.


Height: 6’2”
Weight: 251 pounds
Arm Length: 33 1/2
Hands: 10 1/4


40-Yard Dash: 4.58
Bench Press: 17 reps of 225 pounds
Vertical Jump: 38.0
Broad Jump: 118.0
20 Yard Shuttle: 4.37
60 Yard Shuttle: 11.85

Pruitt was a top performer at the combine running the fastest 40-yard dash among tight ends, the best vertical jump, and ranked fourth in the broad jump. Along with his obvious athleticism, the 6-foot-2, 250-pound Pruitt showed soft hands in the positional drills.

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Shortly after announcing the release of WR Kain Colter and G Jesse Somsel, the Minnesota Vikings signed Isaac Fruechte, an ex-Golden Gopher and native of Minnesota. The signing brings the Vikings’ roster to 89, just one short of the NFL’s 90-man limit. Fruechte attended the Vikings’ rookie minicamp over the weekend.

While at the University of Minnesota, Fruechte played in 38 total games, starting 18 of those. In an offense that relied heavily on the legs of running back David Cobb, Fruechte was far from one of the nation’s more productive receivers. However, he hauled in 18 catches for 292 yards and a touchdown in 2014, earning the Gophers’ Wide Receiver of the Year award as a senior.

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