Vikings Territory Breakdown: O-Line Competition is Over—or Just Beginning?

They say Kirk Cousins is a smart dude—just look at the contracts he has secured in Minnesota. Well, if reports we’re getting out of TCO Performance Center are valid, perhaps the Vikings need a refund. The Star Tribune’s NFL Insider Mark Craig has been at Vikings minicamp this week and so far he reports that Kirk is confused by Ed Donatell’s defensive scheme. (Please tell me Kellen Mond is picking it up . . . ).

Craig says the defense is ahead of the offense at this point, and the result has been a confused Cousins. Craig has seen several plays in 11 on 11 in which Kirk was throwing the ball away or holding on to it long after he would have been sacked. It’s early. No need to panic, Purple Nation. Maybe Kirk is still seeing Zimmer-disguised blitz ghosts and needs to clear his head.

And then maybe the defense is always ahead of the offense—particularly when the unit is learning a new offense—because a lot of the D’s job is to react and the offense needs time to get things tight. Or is it the other way around? Well, we’ll let Mark Craig, with his co-host Joe Oberle (who is as confused as Cousins), sort that out on the Vikings Territory Breakdown podcast.

Finally, we will take a deeper dive into the Donatell Defense. Are there any break-out performances? Will Lewis Cine make the scene as a starter? Are D and Za’D giving Kirk fits? The Vikings have had their last practice until Training Camp in late July (but there is an all-team cookout/picnic on the schedule that Kumbaya Craig is just geeked about), so stop by to get the latest until we get more. VT Breakdown podcast—check it out!

O-Line

  • They say the right guard spot will be an open competition between Davis, Chris Reed and the second-round pick. Didn’t mention your guy Wyatt. Not looking good for the former Buckeye.

D-Line

  • Lot of looks that have Za’Darius rushing from the inside. Some with Hunter in there too.
  • Liking Harrison Phillips more the more I see him. will be a fan favorite if he plays well and the defense does well. Great personality. Blue collar guy. Real talker.
K.J. Osborn and Chad Beebe

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