Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Blog Page 199

Report:  Sometimes headlines are misleading.

An NFL.com article was headlined “Joe Webb will switch to wideout for Minnesota Vikings” on Sunday which led many to assume, you know, that the Minnesota Vikings were going to switch Joe Webb to wideout again.

That, however, may not be the case.

The source for this “report” comes from a Sid Hartman article in which Leslie Frazier gave a typical non-committal non-answer answer when asked about the possibility of once again moving Webb to another role in the offense.

“[Webb] is such a talented athlete that we want to make sure that we’re doing the right thing by him and our team, as well,” Hartman quoted Frazier. “That’s something we’ll continue to discuss as we go forward.”

Perhaps the league’s official site should have written a more responsible headline.  “Frazier Doesn’t Rule Out Webb At WR” would’ve been a little less deceiving.

Regardless, things are a little slow right now, so bring on some good old Joe Webb debate!

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This weekend the family and I took a little road trip and it just happened to take us right by Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

I hadn’t seen the stadium before, so it was neat to see up close, and it really is a beautiful building that looks so much better in its setting than the Metrodome does in downtown Minneapolis.  Seeing Lucas Oil Stadium admittedly got me excited to see what type of design is in the works for the Vikings new home.

It looks like we won’t have to wait much longer.

Officials have said that the stadium designs will be unveiled in early May and Lester Bagley of the Vikings said he anticipates the new stadium to be an “iconic building” for the City of Minneapolis, but admits decisions still need to be made on the retractable roof front.

Either way, I am officially excited to see the graphics next month.

ESPN.com reports that veteran Vikings cornerback Antoine Winfield has signed with the Seattle Seahawks.

“It was a very tough decision for me because of the relationships that I have in Minnesota,” Winfield told Anderson. “I’ve been there nine years. I’ve had some really great coaches, teammates and fans there. I’m very grateful to the Vikings organization for my experience.

“I’m definitely excited about the opportunity to play in Seattle. They’re a great football team. Those guys did an excellent job last season. They’re young, athletic and energetic. I’m excited to play with Richard (Sherman), Brandon (Browner), Kam (Chancellor) and Earl (Thomas) because they’re some of the most talented players on defense in the NFL right now.”

Winfield was released last month suddenly by the Vikings and thus was an unrestricted free agent. The initial report is that the two parties agreed to a one-year deal. The details of the contract are not known at this time.

The Seahawks, who already boasted arguably the NFL’s best secondary, will likely utilize Antoine Winfield in nickel situations.

The loss of Antoine Winfield leaves the Vikings depth chart at cornerback with Chris Cook, Josh Robinson, A.J. Jefferson, Marcus Sherels and Brandon Burton. While middle linebacker likely still remains the number one priority for the Vikings less than two-weeks before the 2013 NFL Draft, cornerback is now definitely a very, very close second.

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Part of the excitement on draft day I believe stems from being able to see the player your team has picked go through the motions of being a first-round selection. You know, the phone call that has the player and their family ecstatic almost to the point of tears. The walk to the stage where they shake Roger Goodell’s hand and are given a generically numbered version of your team’s jersey (which in the Vikings case would be a brand new jersey). The awkward posing for pictures…

Well, from the looks of it, Vikings fans may not get to see anything like that this year and instead may have to settle for that player sharing the draft day  experience at a place of their own choosing surrounded by friends and family. (How selfish of them…)

Today, the NFL released a list of the 23 players who will be attending the first day of the 2013 NFL Draft on April 25th. On first glance, it seems unlikely the Vikings potential selection at 23 or 25 will be in attendance. See the list below:

Ezekiel Ansah / DE, BYU
Tavon Austin / WR, West Virginia
Jonathan Cooper / G, North Carolina
Eric Fisher / OT, Central Michigan
Shariff Floyd / DT, Florida
D.J. Fluker / RT, Alabama
Luke Joeckel / OT, Texas A&M
Lane Johnson / OT, Oklahoma
Dion Jordan / DE, Oregon
Eddie Lacy / RB, Alabama
E.J. Manuel / QB, Florida State
Dee Milliner / CB, Alabama
Barkevious Mingo / DE, LSU
Cordarrelle Patterson / WR, Tennessee
Eric Reid / S, LSU
Xavier Rhodes / CB, Florida State
Sheldon Richardson / DT, Missouri
Geno Smith / QB, West Virginia
Desmond Trufant / CB, Washington
Chance Warmack / G, Alabama
Menelik Watson / OT, Florida State
Bjoern Werner / DE, Florida State
Kenny Vaccaro / S, Texas

Of the above mentioned prospects, those most likely to be selected by the Vikings are Tavon Austin, Cordarrelle Patterson, Xavier Rhodes and Desmond Trufant. Unfortunately for Vikings fans, it’s also quite likely that all four of those players could be off the board by the Vikings selection.

On a completely unrelated note, it’s surprising to see E.J. Manuel on the list of attendees. Could it be that Ponder’s Florida State successor will pull a Ponder on Day 1? Just 14 days, 19 hours and 32 minutes until we find out… But who’s counting?

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According to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport, veteran cornerback and expert tackler Antoine Winfield is now deciding between the Seattle Seahawks and the Minnesota Vikings.

Reports that surfaced earlier today suggested that he may be closer to signing with Seahawks than resigning with the Vikings. Those reports may have been premature as now it looks like Winfield is somewhere in the middle of the two.

Winfield was abruptly released early March – a move that caught the experienced cornerback, his teammates, Vikings personnel and fans all off guard.

The Seahawks (also  known as the Vikings of the West) look to reunite Winfield with ex-Vikings Sidney Rice and Percy Harvin.

Antoine Winfield is expected to make a decision soon.

Edit: Found a pretty interesting story about the last time Winfield was a free agent and stuck between two teams from John Holler over at vikingsupdate.com. Never heard this story before – fun read. (Here’s to hoping for a similar outcome!)


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