Tuesday, July 28, 2015

sharrif floyd

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Tom Johnson reportedly wanted to be paid like a starter, which presumably meant he wanted to be a starter, so some thought he would be leaving the Minnesota Vikings where Sharrif Floyd and Linval Joseph sit atop the rotation at defensive tackle.

I am happy to pass along, however, some news that should be viewed as a good thing for the depth and quality along the defensive line:

Tom Pelissero says that the Vikings have signed Johnson to a three year deal worth $7 million, with about $3 million in guarantees. Without all of the details, that seems like an easily managed contract that keeps the Vikings armed with continuity and dependability at the defensive tackle position.

Johnson had 22 tackles, six sacks, and a forced fumble in a limited role during the 2014 season.

Be sure to check out all the latest free agency news and rumors with Arif’s Live Blog right here.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

[Note: This segment is a part of a position-by-position look at what the Minnesota Vikings might be inclined to do during the 2015 free agency period. This is the 10th article, focusing on the defensive tackles and nose tackles. In case you missed it, feel free to check out the quarterbacksrunning backstight endsfullbackswide outsspecialistssafeties, cornerbacks, and defensive ends.]

Yesterday, we discussed the Vikings’ biggest needs at defensive end, which include adding depth behind Brian Robison and addressing Corey Wootton’s expiring contract. Many fans enjoy watching the edge rushers, as they tend to be one of the more disruptive defensive groups. Without a solid nose or defensive tackle, though, players like Everson Griffen wouldn’t be nearly as successful as they were in 2014.

With a 4-5 record, the Vikings enter their bye week in third place within the NFC North.  Certain aspects (ahem, offensive line) have been disappointing enough that the words “Vikings” and “playoffs” are not mentioned in the same sentence very often these days.  Still, there is a lot to be excited about with the way this team seems to be headed, and certainly plenty of storylines to discuss.

Here is the best from around the internet we could dig up on this week off.  Click the link, read the words, and tell them who sent you:

 

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The Minnesota Vikings are working to be a more fit, more agile, and more productive team.  According to an ESPN article, the Vikings have collectively shed 170 pounds of body fat and gained 70 pounds of muscle.

Earlier this spring, buzz surrounded rookie defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd as he worked to build a healthier lifestyle. Floyd is preparing to compete for the starting nose tackle job previously held by Kevin Williams. You can view a video highlighting his efforts here.

Floyd isn’t the only member of the franchise making changes, however. One of the first things Coach Mike Zimmer did when joining Minnesota was take high-fat items out of the Vikings’ menu. “I’m eating fish every day for lunch,” said Zimmer. “That’s a new thing for me.”

In addition to diet changes, the team has also changed its offseason weight-lifting program. The new regiment is helping players trim the fat while building muscle.

Zimmer acknowledges that the extra adjustments have been a “collective effort” by the team, and it seems like everyone is on board. Thus far, Floyd is showing the most significant results. Since starting his personal lifestyle changes and also taking part with Zimmer’s program tweaks, the tackle has lost 25 pounds from where he was at the end of the 2013-14 season.

Floyd said the following:

“I changed a lot of things this offseason. I stopped eating meat. I started eating just seafood and really focusing on my diet, and everything leads into what I do on Sunday. [Giving up meat was] really hard. I lived off pork. I thought pork made the world go around. […] That was just me [making the decision]. Do I want to keep putting this stuff in my body or do I want to get right? So I decided to give up things that I love that are not really good for me right now. My body feels great. I’ve been telling people my body hasn’t felt this way since I first started playing football.”

With the roster working together to follow Floyd’s example, Vikings fan can be assured that these guys will be ready to go come September 7.

There is little we fans find more frustrating about our Vikings than their willingness to sit on young players, hoping they develop into quality players via practice rather than rushing them into action before their ready.  The frustration is compounded when we never get a chance to see what the player has on game day and Audie Cole is the latest example.

In a curious move, just prior to Thursday night’s matchup against Washington, the Vikings decided to waive their young linebacker and promote offensive tackle Kevin Murphy from the practice squad.  With Phil Loadholt missing time, and Charlie Johnson also out, I can see the sense in needing more depth up front.  Still, making Cole the casualty just doesn’t seem to add up.

Tonight’s inactives are:  Cornerback Chris Cook, right tackle Phil Loadholt, guard Charlie Johnson, safety Jamarca Sanford, running back Matt Asiata, tight end Kyle Rudolph, and defensive tackle Fred Evans.

Surprisingly LeTroy Guion, who was listed as “doubtful,” is active for tonight’s game.  He will not start, however, and rookie Sharrif Floyd will be filling in.

Please make sure you join us in our VT Chat Room to discuss tonight’s action, including a Hall of Fame ring presentation for Cris Carter, with all the Vikings fans that hang out in these parts.

 

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