4 Risers from Vikings 2nd Week of Training Camp

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The Minnesota Vikings recently conducted Week 2 of training camp, leading up to the first preseason game in Seattle on August 10th.

Minnesota will play three preseason games before taking on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 1 on September 10th.

4 Risers from Vikings 2nd Week of Training Camp

And at the second week of camp, these four players stood out in particular (listed alphabetically).

1. Lewis Cine (FS)

Risers from Vikings 2nd
Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

This man needed a jolt after a somewhat quiet first week of camp, and a jolt is what he delivered inside Brian Flores’ new defense.

The second-year safety put together some fancy highlights in training camp’s second week, starting to erase the memory of an ill-fated rookie campaign where he struggled to win a starter’s job and later broke his leg.

Flores will probably allot equitable playing time between Camryn Bynum, Josh Metellus, and Cine at free safety, but Cine could become ‘the guy’ in crunchtime down the stretch of the season.

2. Akayleb Evans (CB)

as April Arrives
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Last week, all the CB2 pizazz belonged to veteran CB Joejuan Williams.

But Week 2 of camp was a different story as Akayleb Evan stepped into the first-team defense and did the thing. For now, he’s running opposite Byron Murphy as the Vikings other starting cornerback.

Evans showcased several glimpses of proficiency as a rookie before his season was undone by concussions. And at training camp this week, he asserted himself in a big way.

3. Josh Oliver (TE)

Vikings.com’s Gabe Henderson talked with new Minnesota Vikings tight end Josh Oliver after he was signed by the team during 2023 NFL free agency. Oliver is on deck to serve as the Vikings TE2 in 2023 behind TE1 T.J. Hockenson.

For starters, Oliver didn’t have a quiet or bad first week of camp. Instead, folks started to realize after several practices that Oliver was the real deal. T.J. Hockenson will always overshadow him on the depth chart — but who cares? The team can employ and deploy two productive tight ends.

Oliver is much more than a ‘run-blocking tight end.’ With the Ravens, he had to up his run-game skillset to get playing time. The man can also catch the football — that was his modus operandi in college — and the masses are starting to see that in living color.

For instance, if Hockenson falls injured in 2023 for a couple of games, Oliver should step into the offense as TE1 without doomsday predictions for Kirk Cousins and Co.

4. Ivan Pace Jr. (LB)

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Pace Jr. excelled in Week 1 of training camp; Pace Jr. excelled even more this week.

This gentleman could even be vying for a starter’s job — forget a mundane 53-man roster spot. He was a machine in college and curiously went undrafted in April. But the Vikings rushed to the UDFA wire for his services, and so far at camp, they’re not regretting the decision.

If folks could officially vote on ‘Mr. Mankato,’ Pace Jr. would probably be the frontrunner through August 4th.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.