Monday, July 6, 2015

harrison smith

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This week’s Vikings Fan Spotlight is Part II of a 3-segment series. I had such an amazing response on Twitter from Vikings fans all over the world, and I decided to break this feature into three separate parts. 

Kristian L. G. Nielsen – Havdrup, Denmark – @klgn

kristianQ: How did you first become a Vikings fan?
A: This a bit funny, actually. In the early 90’s a lot of the kids at my school bought NFL caps. I bought one as well. The first one was actually a Giants cap, but it broke. The next one I bought was a Vikings cap, it was a grey one. I got teased a bit at school, because the Raiders were the popular team. Back then NFL was only shown in a weekly highlight show, and I must admit I didn’t watch it. Actually thought it was a weird sport. I watched a lot of soccer instead. Soccer is the most popular sport over here. As every Vikings fan know Atlanta made it to the Super Bowl in 1999, and the Falcons kicker at that time, Morten Andersen, is Danish, so that Super Bowl was broadcast back here and was the beginning of NFL being broadcast over here live every kristian2Sunday. […] I have a tough time watching a sport and not cheering for a specific team, and since I still had (and have) my grey Vikings cap, the choice was easy for me. I don’t know at what spcific date it happened, but I would probably say the Vikings @ Packers playoff game in 2005 where Moss mooned at Lambeau is the first one I remember cheering vividly for the Vikings. […] Before we had kids I would watch every game live, I would even go to bed early, set an alarm and get up at 2.30 AM to watch the late night games. Now I’ll have to catch those games OnDemand instead. I also listen to a lot of the Minnesota sports radio stations […] and love listening to fan podcasts and discussing Vikings stuff on twitter. I’m spending way too much time being a Vikings fan, but once you’re hooked you can’t get rid of it.

Q: Who is your favorite player on the current Vikings roster?
A: This is a tough one. A year ago I would have said Adrian Peterson, but now it’s a bit tougher. I’m going to go with John Sullivan. He seems like a great dude, and I love listening to him on various radio shows. He’s very articulate and the insights he gives are very good, I think.

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Which Defensive Player will Have the Most Standout Season for the Vikings in 2015?

Andy: Sharrif Floyd 
He won’t standout the most on the stat sheet, but I think he’s in line for a very productive junior season for the Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings. We’ve seen flashes of brilliance his first two campaigns, but I think 2015 is where he’ll consistently become that disruptive force of nature that Mike Zimmer can hang his hat on in the middle.

Brent: Harrison Smith
Smith is coming off an excellent 2014 in which he was the 2nd-ranked safety by PFF standards. His versatility is important to Zimmer’s defense, and I think they’ll get even more creative with how they use Smith in 2015. Not only does Smith move around a lot, he’s also the last line of defense over the top of the secondary. Trusting Smith to be right deep down field allows the Vikings to be aggressive with their front seven. There are plenty of arguments for Anthony Barr and Everson Griffen—hell, throw Xavier Rhodes’ name into the ring as well. At the end of the day, I think Smith’s involvement in stopping both the run and pass gives him the most opportunity to make plays and have an impact.

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Welcome to “Sleeper Sunday” where a few of us here at VT are going to take a look at some of our favorite Day Two and Three prospects between now and Draft Weekend. Luke Inman is providing in-depth scouting reports for the bigger names set to join the NFL, but this is where we explore some of our favorite options that will be found further down the Vikings draft board.

Be sure to tune in every Sunday for a fresh batch of sleepers!

First up, I take a look at a guy that I think can be compared to Taylor Mays in a lot of ways, and we already know the Vikings have expressed interest in Mays as a free agent.

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(photo used with permission)

Whether you’re a fellow Vikings fan at autograph signings, games, the tailgate lot, or just the wonderful world of social media, you are probably familiar with Erin Darsow, aka “Panda.”

Darsow is by far one of the most dedicated Vikings fans I have ever met. And she wears her fandom on her sleeve—literally. From decked-out team spirit outfits to tattoos of Vikings players’ autographs on her arm, she leaves no question marks about her allegiance to the purple and gold.

She has an interesting story, too. Unlike most of our featured fans, who were born into Vikings fandom, Darsow didn’t have that same experience.

“I had to learn about [the Vikings] on my own,” she said.”

Darsow first became a fan in 1998; although she was only in middle school at the time, she started attending football games at the local high school and “begged the guys to explain the basics” to her. She soon realized she had to choose a team, and there was no question for this Minnesota girl: the Vikings it was.

“I think that, the fact that my first football season was our traumatic 1998 year, and I still stuck with it, meant it was to be for life,” Darsow said, smiling. 

2015 Scouting Report Landon Collins
[Editor’s note: This is another installment in a series we will be running at Vikings Territory providing scouting reports for players the Vikings could potentially target in the 2015 Draft. All scouting reports are provided in partnership with Luke Inman and eDraft.com. You can find all of our previous scouting reports here. Continue reading below to learn more about Landon Collins, the consensus number one safety in the 2015 NFL Draft]

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