There are a number of interesting position battles to keep track of during next month’s training camp, but perhaps no position has a higher level of competition than that of the currently vacant right guard position.
By drafting left tackle Matt Kalil fourth overall, the Vikings were then able to slide Charlie Johnson inside to left guard. With Phil Loadholt and John Sullivan being near certain starters, that leaves only the right guard starting spot available to the best candidate.
During last week’s minicamp all indications are that Brandon Fusco will enter camp as the penciled-in starter. Geoff Schwartz, however, plans to have something to say about that.
Unfortunately for Schwartz, who started 19 straight games in Carolina, his hip is still bothering him and he needs to heal up before he can truly give the Vikings coaches a glimpse of what he’s got.
“Just need to get back on the field,” Schwartz said during OTA’s. “That’s basically what it is. Get 100 percent healthy and let my play do the talking.”
Jeff Davidson coaches the Vikings offensive line, but he came over from Carolina where he got a firsthand look at Schwartz in the locker room and on the field. Davidson, however, is not tipping his hand as to who might be the preferred option at right guard.
“I’d say the jury’s still out on that right now,” Davidson said. “We’re hopeful.”
Schwartz openly cites his familiarity with Schwartz as a primary reason he signed with the Vikings after receiving interest from both Detroit and San Francisco, but he also wanted a legitimate chance to start, and felt that joining a team that had just released their two previously starting guards was an easy choice.
“I believe I’m a starter,” Schwartz said. “So I was looking at spots that had competition at my position, and this is one of them. So it was another reason why, I came to compete.”