The Vikings Are Back

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The offseason is finally over. Fans had to wait a long time for the players to come back to get ready for actual football, but the Vikings arrived at training camp on Sunday — at least some of them. The veterans get two more days off, but some of them joined the rookies and came in a couple of days earlier.

The Vikings Are Back

The Vikings Are Back
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Thirty-seven players reported to TCO Performance Center on Sunday, as the Vikings announced. Here’s the complete list (veterans bold):

  • Jordan Addison
  • Junior Aho
  • Alan Ali
  • Calvin Avery
  • Abraham Beauplan
  • Ross Blacklock
  • Mekhi Blackmon
  • Andre Carter II
  • Jacky Chen
  • C.J. Coldon, Jr.
  • Kirk Cousins
  • Jaren Hall
  • Wilson Huber
  • Lucky Jackson
  • Cephus Johnson III
  • Malik Knowles
  • William Kwenkeu
  • James Lynch
  • Garett Maag
  • DeWayne McBride
  • Nick Mullens
  • Zach Ojile
  • Brian O’Neill
  • Ivan Pace Jr.
  • Harrison Phillips
  • Jack Podlesny
  • Blake Proehl
  • Chris Reed
  • Jaquelin Roy
  • Sam Schlueter
  • Ben Sims
  • T.J. Smith
  • Josh Sokol
  • Thayer Thomas
  • NaJee Thompson
  • Jay Ward
  • Jaylin Williams

All three quarterbacks arrived early, just like last season. Kirk Cousins is the starter, but veteran Nick Mullens and rookie Jaren Hall will compete for the backup spot. It should also be noted that the NFL implemented the emergency QB position on the gameday roster, so the Vikings could keep three quarterbacks, unlike in 2022.

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Brian O’Neill’s injury recovery will be a significant topic in the upcoming weeks. He partially tore his Achilles tendon in the Week 17 loss against the Green Bay Packers. The Vikings need him back on the field as a cornerstone at their offensive line, forming an elite tackle duo with Christian Darrisaw.

Also notable are the four defensive tackles, James Lynch, Harrison Phillips, T.J. Smith, and Ross Blacklock. While Phillips is the top guy on the defensive line, everyone else is competing for a starting job but is simultaneously in jeopardy of losing their roster spot. Getting a couple of extra days of work in could help them compete.

First-round choice Jordan Addison returned to the facility after making the news with off-the-field issues. He also missed all the organized team activities and minicamp due to an injury. He is playing a significant role in the plans of the 2023 Vikings and in years to come. It will be vital for him to get acclimated to the NFL quickly.

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Just like Addison, DeWayne McBride missed much of the offseason workouts. The rookie enters a crowded RB room with multiple players fighting for jobs and touches. Alexander Mattison is expected to be the starter, but the rookie had a productive college career and could make life hard for the veteran.

The veterans are scheduled to arrive on Tuesday. Defensive end Danielle Hunter could opt to stay away from the team until his contract demands are met, which will be another fascinating topic in the upcoming weeks.

Minnesota plays its first preseason game in Seattle on August 10th, and the regular season opener will take place at home against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on September 10th.

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