3 Losers from Vikings 1st Preseason Game

Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports.

The Minnesota Vikings lost their first preseason game 24-13 at the Seattle Seahawks. While athletes always want to come away with a victory, nobody will care about the result of a preseason game on September 10th when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers visit Minnesota to face the Vikings in Week 1.

3 Losers from Vikings 1st Preseason Game

The result of the contest is meaningless, but the evaluation of players is not. A primary reason to even have the preseason games is to look at the players outside of structured practice sessions against different teams. Some practice champions get exposed, and others can make a big step toward making the roster or finding a way to make the starting lineup. But who was a loser in Week 1 of the preseason?

Andrew Booth Jr.

The cornerback is in trouble. The first bad sign was that he didn’t play in the first half of the game and was subbed in to play the second. This is a second-round cornerback in his second season that cannot crack the rotation in an unproven secondary. He was behind rookie third-rounder Mekhi Blackmon and fellow 2022 draftee Akayleb Evans, not some high-pedigree players.

3 Losers From Vikings 1st Preseason Game
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

Another disappointing scene was his performance. He blew the coverage on a touchdown in the second half and had a couple of other awful coverage plays. In his debut season, Booth made headlines because of his injuries, missing parts of training camp, the first few games of the season, and the end of the season injured. Now in Year two, Booth has already missed a brief stint of training camp and put this performance on tape.

The starting jobs are far away, and he must start getting his legs under him because it is a massive problem if a highly-touted player only makes the roster because of his draft status.

DeWayne McBride

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

The rookie running back had a highly productive college career at UAB, showcasing his dominant running style of just running over people. He also possesses a devastating spin move. In the preseason contest, none of that showed up.

His stat line of 6 rushed for 15 yards, resulting in an average of 2.5 yards per run, is underwhelming for a player going up against bottom-of-the-roster guys. 2022 draft pick Ty Chandler stole the show, looking much more explosive, and he was an excellent option in the passing game. He is clearly ahead and should be considered the top backup of starter Alexander Mattison.

McBride’s pass-catching ability has been a significant concern since he only caught five passes in his entire college career. He didn’t snag a single pass on Thursday, so the problems will not disappear. He also was extremely successful in college in running through contact and gaining yards after the tackle, but he didn’t show that in his first NFL exposure. Recent signing Abram Smith had one more carry, which is also a problem.

Ed Ingram

Besides rookies Jordan Addison and Mekhi Blackmon, not many meaningful contributors received playing time in the game. Khyiris Tonga played a bunch of snaps on defense, but he was a practice squad guy at the beginning of last season, so it isn’t shocking to see him on the field. Akayleb Evans is penciled in as the starting outside cornerback, but he played on only 162 snaps last season. Facing the Seahawks was a nice opportunity to gain some. Josh Metellus and Josh Oliver will have important roles but are technically still backups.

PurplePTSD: Old Viking to Dolphins, Ed Ingram Momentum, MIN-LV Winners and Losers
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

But one starter on the offensive line played and wasn’t rested — Ed Ingram. The second-year guard played every snap last year, logging 1,168 plays, but the coaching staff still felt the need to have him suit up. Fully expected to be in the starting role again, he must take a step in the right direction.

His performance was a mixed bag. He had some fantastic reps earlier in the game but struggled badly on his second drive before he was superseded by Alan Ali, who had a great game. Offensive linemen aren’t evaluated for their best plays but for their worst. They especially must limit the number of bad plays.

Ingram isn’t considered in immediate danger of replacement at the RG spot, but Dalton Risner met with the Vikings early last week and is still available. The Vikings also moved veteran backup Blake Brandel from left tackle to right guard.

Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt