Friday, October 20, 2017

shariff floyd

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Vikings OTAs: 7 Positions Up For Grabs

The Minnesota Vikings’ organized team activities, or OTAs, began Tuesday. OTAs are offseason training sessions run with the purpose of developing players; or, simply put, practices without tackling. There are no 1-on-1 drills, only team drills.

OTAs can be a good barometer of how the team’s roster is going to shape up come the regular season. Generally, the players who practice together play together. Certainly, there are exceptions.

Lets take a look at several key position battles that will unfold during the Vikings preseason.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Thanks to an announcement earlier this week, Minnesota Vikings fans were able to prepare themselves to watch a defense minus Xavier Rhodes (again) and Shariff Floyd against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday night.

Both players are dealing with a knee injury and neither practiced all week. Rhodes sat out the Vikings’ game last week against the Tennessee Titans while Floyd only managed to play 25 of the defense’s 67 snaps in Tennessee.

Below are the additional players that Minnesota will be without tonight.

In addition to Rhodes and Floyd, the Vikings will be without the services of tight end MyCole Pruitt for the second straight week. Pruitt is still recovering from a minor knee injury he suffered back in the preseason against the San Diego Chargers.

Wide receiver Jarius Wright is a healthy scratch for Minnesota for the second straight week. Still unsure why his status on the team is basically non existent these days.

On the other side of the ball the Packers will be without the following players tonight.

– Joe Callahan, QB

– Josh Hawkins, CB

– Chris Banjo, S

– Sam Shields, CB

– Kyle Murphy, T

– Jayrone Elliot, LB

The absence of their top cornerback in Sam Shields could lead to a big night for Vikings wide receiver Stefon Diggs. Sure would be nice if new Minnesota quarterback Sam Bradford could light up the Green Bay secondary in front of the home crowd during the team’s opening game at U.S. Bank Stadium.

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An Andrew Billings scouting report with a Minnesota Vikings focus.

[This Andrew Billings Scouting Report, with a Vikings slant, has been provided to Vikings Territory by Draft Season. Be sure to check back for more and also be sure to visit Draft Season to quench your NFL Draft thirst. All previously published scouting reports can be found by clicking here.]

Andrew Billings | DT, Baylor

Measurements

Height – 6’1″
Weight – 311 lbs.
Age – 20 yrs.

At First Glance

First-team All-Big 12

Projected Round:

1st – 2nd Round

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

When it comes to trades, the NFL is usually not known for these types of transactions as much as other professional sports leagues have been such as the NBA, NHL, and MLB. However, the league did have a total of 38 trades in 2015 before the start of the regular season that featured at least one player (not just draft picks) and that total is the highest it has been in the last three years.

In the last three NFL offseasons, there have been a total of 89 trades made before the start of that year’s regular season. The Vikings have been involved in four of those 89 trades, including three in 2015.

Will Minnesota and general manager Rick Spielman participate in any trades in this upcoming offseason? If they do, who has the possibility of leaving town?

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Vikings Raiders
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The Vikings have won four straight games. They’ve won on the road, against division foes and, most recently, against a team with a winning record. The Vikings are 6-2 and are now not only in the playoff conversation but also in the division championship conversation. Looking ahead at the schedule. the Vikings have some difficult match ups in front of them. Just a week ago, ESPN found that the Vikings have the hardest remaining schedule in the NFL. It seems like from this point forward, every week is going to be a tough game.

This week is no different as the Vikings travel to Oakland and take on a similarly young and up-and-coming team. Featuring some intriguing player parallels between the likes of Stefon Diggs and Amari Cooper as well as Anthony Barr and Khalil Mack, the duel most people are talking about are between the two sophomore quarterbacks, Teddy Bridgewater and Derek Carr. Both quarterbacks have had impressive early campaigns in their young careers and it should be fun to watch the two go head-to-head in what is hopefully a display of the NFL’s future at the position.

We still have a couple of days yet until these pillaging teams face off. In the meantime, we’ve compiled a bunch of links to get your prepared for the game and catch you up on the latest Vikings news.

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