Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Blog Page 205

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We all knew it was coming.

After his lackluster performance in the Vikings’ Wild Card loss to the Cheeseheads, Joe Webb knew that his only chance of making the 53-man roster in 2013 was at a different position.

Well, now it’s official. The Vikings have moved Webb to wide receiver.

“We had been talking about it for a while, and we made the decision that this was the way to go after we had our draft,” Frazier told the Star Tribune.

With Webb now at wide receiver, he’s facing an uphill battle to stick with the Vikings this upcoming season. He’ll duke it out with Jerome Simpson, Jarius Wright and the rest of the receiver depth chart for snaps behind Greg Jennings and Cordarrelle Patterson. Considering the few glimpses we’ve gotten of him as a pass-catcher, it’s not promising to say the least.

Still, you can never discount an athlete of Webb’s caliber. He’s been working to improve his pass-catching skills all offseason long and could surprise during training camp and the preseason.

For now, we wait and speculate on something we knew was inevitable.

Yesterday, we mentioned that the Vikings signed three of their later-round rookies already, and on Wednesday the Vikings got the rest of their rookies not drafted in the first to do the same.

The Vikings have now announced that fifth round punter Jeff Locke, sixth round lineman Jeff Baca, and seventh round lineman Travis Bond are all officially members of the team.  This now leaves only the team’s three first round selections to sign.

For those still convinced the Vikings couldn’t have possibly replaced Chris Kluwe, with Locke, for any reason other than Kluwe’s off-field efforts, Locke’s new contract will pay him only about $2.34 million over four years.  Kluwe was set to make $1.4 million in 2013 alone.

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It’s been three years since the Minnesota Vikings traded up to make running back Toby Gerhart a second-round pick.

Since then, he’s done nothing to prove that he’s capable of being a reliable option behind Adrian Peterson. On top of averaging a pathetic 3.4 yards per carry last season, he failed to display the power and vision that made him a top prospect coming out of college. And we all remember that disastrous fumble-fest against the San Francisco 49ers…

Unless Gerhart magically flips a switch in 2013, the Vikings will part ways with the former Heisman Trophy runner-up. What avenue they decide to take, though, is TBD.

The first, and most appealing, of the Vikings’ options is trading Gerhart, who could be an intriguing addition for a team looking to implement some power into their ground game. While the former second-round pick won’t fetch much after three underwhelming seasons, getting something for Gerhart instead of letting him walk via free agency seems logical.

The other option is severing ties with Gerhart now and avoiding disaster. Let’s talk hypotheticals…

Let’s say – knock on wood – Peterson goes down in 2013 and is forced to miss significant time due to the injury. In that instance, the Vikings would have to rely on Gerhart to carry the load with no other proven running backs on the roster. While he has been serviceable in the short-term, he’s too inconsistent and inefficient to start more than two or three games. Avoiding that situation might be a good option for Minnesota.

If the Vikings did go with Door No. 2, a free agency acquisition would become a must. The only other ball carriers currently on the roster are Matt Asiata and a handful of undrafted rookies. Not exactly comforting in terms of depth. There are several capable options – Ahmad Bradshaw, Michael Turner, Javon Ringer – wading in the free agency pool who could fill the void.

It’s something to consider moving forward, especially with Gerhart likely headed elsewhere in 2013.

I thought for sure Rick Spielman and company would wait until three minutes before training camp begins to sign their rookies.  That always feels like the way of it, anyways.

This year might be different, though, as the Vikings have already gotten started on the process.

Fourth round linebacker Gerald Hodges, seventh round linebacker Michael Mauti, and seventh round defensive tackle Everett Dawkins signed their rookie contracts on Tuesday.  Each of these rookie deals are for four years and include signing bonuses.

The Vikings still have all three of their first round selections to worry about, but the rookie wage scale all but guarantees there to be little drama surrounding these guys and their contracts.

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It’s pretty awesome that we got to watch the unveiling today of the stadium where our Minnesota Vikings will be playing for many years to come. Think about that for a second… Just a couple years ago the idea of a new stadium seamed unattainable. Today, we’re talking about how big the monitors are going to be and exactly how many toilets will be provided.

I think we all just need to take that in for a moment.

Good? Okay, let’s move on.

I wanted to outline some of the details of the new stadium, provide some pretty-picture renderings andgive a bit of my own personal opinion. (I have an education in Architecture, so my opinion matters. Not really, though…)

New Vikings Stadium Front Rendering

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