Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Vikings Training Camp

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(used with permission)

If you ask John Kurkosky how long he’s been rooting for the Minnesota Vikings, he’ll tell you it’s been a pretty long time.

To be specific, since “they got the Purple People Eaters tag.”

For those of you that want to do the math, that’s fine with him. Kurkosky has stuck with this team for years, and he doesn’t expect to leave its side anytime soon. Kurkosky used to attend the season openers at the Metrodome. Early on, he loved watching some of those classic names that all Vikings fans will recognize: Jim Marshall, Alan Page, Carl Eller, Chuck Foreman and Fran Tarkenton—or “Fran the Man,” as Kurkosky says.

Later, he watched Cris Carter, Randy Moss and Brett Favre come through the line.

And now, Kurkosky couldn’t be more excited to watch a new Vikings roster and new coaching system compete for a chance to make the NFL Playoffs. This fan is a believer in head coach Mike Zimmer, now entering his second season in Minnesota. Coming from someone who remembers watch the great Bud Grant at the helm, this is high praise. Kurkosky said the following:

Zimmer has brought a lot of hope. I think and hope he will be a great coach; we are starting to see him build a team that plays and works hard together and puts in that extra effort for a game victory. I believe he will make these players have more confidence in themselves, which will consequently bring more effort and more victories.

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Despite a slight scare in yesterday’s practice, Adrian Peterson says he’s doing just fine.

Peterson left practice yesterday after being stopped on a run play. Slow to get up initially, he did return to the field for one play before retreating to the locker room with medical staff.

“He got tangled up,” Jerick McKinnon said. “A defender fell on him, but he said he was all right. Everybody knows Adrian’s got a cape on. He’ll be back out here. I don’t think anybody’s worried about him.”

Peterson was later reported as having a thigh injury that wasn’t considered to be serious.

Today, head coach Mike Zimmer told media that he has “a little bruise” and although Peterson is being cautious at camp, it’s nothing to be concerned about.

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The Vikings announced Wednesday afternoon that they have reached an agreement with Minnesota State University, Mankato to hold training camp on campus for at least another three years.

It seems appropriate that the extension would come about in the 50th anniversary of holding camp in Mankato.

“It’s been wonderful to celebrate 50 years of Vikings training camp on our campus this summer,” said the University’s president, Dr. Richard Davenport. “We look forward to the Vikings being here during the University’s 150th year anniversary celebration.”

Minnesota State University original began as Mankato Normal School in 1868. The school changed its name to Mankato State University in 1975, and in 1995 it took on its current namesake when the seven state universities were transferred to the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system by the state legislature.

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After spending a week in Mankato at training camp, I’ve seen a lot of Adrian Peterson. No personal interactions, but just observing him on the field, off the field, hanging out with teammates.

I’ve come to decide that he needs (deserves?) a second chance.

Remember earlier this year? I was ready to send Peterson packing. I had no interest in him playing for the Vikings again, and I wanted nothing more than to see him traded to just be done with all the drama.

When the very first report of the abuse incident came out, I had mixed feelings about the situation. I really felt there was a lot of truth to the idea that Peterson didn’t know a whole lot better, that he didn’t have cruel intentions. That it was a cultural/geographical difference in socially acceptable discipline. But still, he did hurt a child and didn’t use much self control.

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Purple FTW! has arrived in Mankato and we got football gurus Arif Hasan, Sam Ekstrom, & Luke Inman to join us LIVE at the Boulder Tap House to recap the training camp winners & losers so far, predictions on how the Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings are rounding into form, and how they’re lining up headed into Saturday’s night scrimmage. I also explain my Matt Kalil pizza conspiracy theory… Also Mankato Trivia!

All that and other “cameo from the waitress” chatter on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An Andy Carlson Joint.

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