After a Week One performance that made it appear as if utility man Cordarrelle Patterson was ready to build on his impressive rookie season, something changed and he has been fading into the background of this Vikings team with haste.
Speculation has been everywhere regarding Patterson’s sudden dropoff in production and playing time. There have been theories about undisclosed injuries or personality issues or clashes with the coaches. The most popular theory, and the one that makes the most sense, is that Patterson is still the project we thought he was when he was drafted and that he needs to improve his route running before he can expect an increase in playing time.
The release of Jerome Simpson opened the door for Charles Johnson in Minnesota, but nobody can honestly tell you they expected Johnson to surpass Patterson on the depth chart at the time of his signing. But that is exactly what has happened and it is clear, despite public endorsements of Patterson from Zimmer, and offensive coordinator Norv Turner clearly prefers Johnson in the lead wide out role.
Patterson has opened up at times throughout this frustrating season, previously expressing that he is not having as much fun in his sophomore season, but he recently took his concerns straight to the man in charge of the Vikings roster.