Friday, October 21, 2016

mike priefer

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Vikings Day Off Fight

The Minnesota Vikings had the day off today (they apparently take Taco Tuesday VERY seriously). But it gave us time to collect our thoughts on the goings on in Mankato before they strap em back on again Wednesday.

Show Topics Include:
• Why Training Camp Fights Are Good
• Jayron Kearse is Rising
• Mike Priefer Defends Jeff Locke
• Vikings Breaking Ground on Eagan Practice Facility
• The Backup QB Situation is Ungood
• O-Line Not Solidified Yet
• Honey Badger Gets Paid MORE Than Harrison
• Jerick McKinnon Could Be a Star in The NFL
• I Still Don’t Get the Boehringer Hype
• Korey Stringer Passed 15 Years Ago

All that and other “How You Gonna Get Fired on Your Day Off?” chatter on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint

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Punter Jeff Locke

If Vegas took bets on which player on a roster was most likely to be replaced in training camp (maybe Vegas does that, I don’t know) the front runner on the Minnesota Vikings roster would be punter Jeff Locke.

If Locke looks over his shoulder in Mankato, he will not see another punter eager to take his job. He is the only punter there, in fact, but that doesn’t mean he cannot be replaced. Both he and special teams coordinator Mike Priefer made that clear this week.

“He’s got to have a good camp here or we’ll end up bringing in competition,” Priefer said. “But for right now, it’s Jeff.”

As Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press pointed out on Monday, the Vikings tried out two undrafted punters earlier this offseason and could still bring one into camp if Locke doesn’t get a little closer to being the guy they thought they drafted 155th overall in 2013.

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Image courtesy of

I promise I had this idea to write an article about punt returner Marcus Sherels finally having very concrete job security before Sid Hartman decided to pen his article today about the exact same thing, but whatever, I’ll give him all the credit.

That’s only fair considering I’m only 31 years old and Sid was still was quicker to the punch.

Every year, it seems, Vikings fans collectively place punt returner Marcus Sherels on the roster bubble throughout training camp. Some, in fact, become convinced that he will surely be sent packing during the final cuts. Any Vikings fans out there that have only been following along for five years or less may actually believe this yearly ordeal to be a franchise-sanctioned tradition.

This year, however, things are very different.

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Cordarrelle Patterson’s future with the Minnesota Vikings has been a hot topic for three seasons now, sometimes for the good he has and done on and off the field, and often due to his lack of production on the field.

The thing that keeps cropping up within the fan base, however, is Patterson’s seemingly aloof attitude and perceived lack of dedication to being a professional football player. This narrative came to a head on Sunday when Patterson allowed Green Bay kicker Mason Crosby to catch him from behind and save a potential touchdown by popping the ball loose from Patterson’s grip.

The turnover allowed Green Bay an unnecessary chance at a comeback, while Patterson’s sideline demeanor drew scorn from Vikings fans from all around. Patterson appeared to be laughing and joking with teammates on the sideline shortly after the huge mistake and that seemingly jovial attitude came to a peak when Xavier Rhodes intercepted an Aaron Rodgers pass in the endzone to keep the Packers at bay.

These images, Patterson smiling after a kicker bested him in a major way, brought all of the built up frustration with the former first rounder to a head.

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Cullen Loeffler has played 171 snaps at long snapper for the Vikings, the most in franchise history and a testament to his staying power in Minnesota. Today, the organization says goodbye to their most-tenured player, releasing Loeffler after 12 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings.

“These types of decisions are the hardest part of our jobs,” said GM Rick Spielman in a statement released on the team’s official website. “Cullen was outstanding in the community and on the field for the Vikings. He handled his business with class and his impact in the locker room and on the franchise were second to none. We wish him the best in the future.”

Loeffler, who joined the Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2004, signed a one-year, $1.05 million contract extension with an $80,000 signing bonus this offseason. The slight pay cut from his 2014 salary indicated the front office was prepared to release Loeffler if expectations weren’t met or bring in competition to raise his level of play.

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