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  1. #1
    FedjeViking is offline Ring of Fame
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    Inside Slant-Latest News

    USA Today

    Inside Slant
    Posted 3/18/2006 2:06 PM

    The Vikings' decision to pull the trigger on the trade that sent Daunte
    Culpepper to Miami for the bargain-basement price of a second-round pick
    in next month's draft brought closure to what had gone from a seemingly
    perfect marriage to an unworkable situation.

    What the trade didn't do was answer the key question: How did things
    turn so ugly, so quickly?

    "Maybe it's a mid-football life crisis," Vikings owner Zygi Wilf said.
    "I don't know, a career crisis ... he wanted a change."

    Among the list of issues contributing to Culpepper's departure from
    Minnesota were his desire for more guaranteed money, misdemeanor charges
    against him from the Vikings' infamous "Love Boat" incident last October
    and his decision to rehabilitate his injured right knee at his Florida
    home instead of in Minnesota.

    Culpepper and new coach Brad Childress also never hit it off and there
    were some who thought Childress had serious doubts about Culpepper's
    ability to run the West Coast offense the Vikings will use. That
    assignment will now fall to 37-year-old Brad Johnson, who is familiar
    with the West Coast system.

    Childress did not address the local media but he did talk about the
    trade on Sirius radio, saying he spent more time with Culpepper during
    pre-draft workouts in 1999 than he had since taking the Vikings job Jan. 6.

    "He was only up here a couple of times," Childress said. "One time he
    came and left, and the other time we sat and met a little bit. ... But
    our recent relationship, I would say, hasn't been great from the
    standpoint of there wasn't a lot of give and take."

    That give and take includes an e-mail the Vikings sent to Culpepper in
    early March. Its contents are unknown but appear to be the final straw
    in the relationship; Culpepper responded to the message by demanding to
    be traded or released.

    Culpepper, who had taken to communicating with the Twin Cities media via
    e-mail, finally spoke to ESPN after the trade with the Dolphins was
    complete.

    "I kind of feel like it's halftime of my career right now," he said.
    "Everybody knows that the team that makes the best adjustments at
    halftime usually wins the game. ... (This experience) really opens your
    eyes up - when you feel like you want to do the best you can and try the
    best you can, but you feel like it wasn't wanted, that it didn't matter.

    "It was tough. But instead of getting bitter, I kind of used it as
    motivation and I got better. A saying that I heard a long time ago is
    that things that don't kill you make you better."

    NOTES, QUOTES

    —Last off-season the Vikings signed safety Darren Sharper, who had been
    cut loose by the Packers. This off-season the Vikings are once again
    targeting some of Green Bay's veterans. First, kicker Ryan Longwell
    received a five-year, $10 million deal that included a $3 million
    signing bonus on the opening day of free agency. The Vikings then
    brought in quarterback Craig Nall and fullback William Henderson for visits.

    —The NFL schedule won't be released until next month but the Vikings
    will get a chance to see Daunte Culpepper next season when they play at
    Miami. Culpepper likely won't be ready for the start of the season
    because of three torn ligaments in his right knee. As a result, it
    wouldn't be surprising to see the Vikings-Dolphins matchup slated for
    national television in November or December.

    —Culpepper sent one final five-paragraph e-mail to Vikings fans after
    being traded to the Dolphins. In it he thanked former Vikings coach
    Denny Green for drafting him, as well as thanking his teammates and
    Vikings fans. Not mentioned was former Vikings coach Mike Tice.

    —The Vikings were targeting safeties Dexter Jackson and Will Demps but
    couldn't get either one to even visit. Jackson signed with Cincinnati
    and Demps joined the New York Giants.

    —Although nothing has been made official, the Vikings are planning on
    sporting redesigned uniforms in 2006. At least four players were in New
    York recently for fittings of the new uniform, which might include
    purple pants.

    QUOTE TO NOTE: "I look forward to returning to my roots, where I can
    spend the second half of my career playing the game I love in front of
    the Florida football faithful." - Former Vikings quarterback Daunte
    Culpepper in an e-mail to the Minnesota media after his trade to the
    Dolphins.

    STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL

    TEAM NEEDS

    1. Linebackers: The Vikings made a quick move, signing San Diego free
    agent Ben Leber to a five-year, $20 million contract that included a $4
    million signing bonus. However, that would only seem to be the start of
    a makeover at this position as the Vikings prepare to switch to a
    Cover-2 scheme. Strongside linebacker Keith Newman won't return and
    there is question if middle linebacker Sam Cowart will be brought back.
    That means the Vikings are either planning to sign another free agent or
    are confident they can find some help in the draft.

    2. Guards: The Vikings might have taken a big step toward resolving
    their issues by signing Seattle transition player Steve Hutchinson to a
    seven-year, $49 million deal. The Seahawks have until Sunday to match
    the contract offer, which includes a cap number of $13 million for 2006.
    The hang-up is a provision in the contract that will make it fully
    guaranteed if the Pro Bowl guard is not the highest-paid member of the
    team's offensive line. The Seahawks could contend they don't have to
    match that part of the deal.

    3. Safety: With strong safety Corey Chavous signing with St. Louis, the
    Vikings lack depth at this position. Willie Offord was re-signed but is
    coming off a season-ending knee injury. The Vikings have been pursuing a
    safety in free agency but lost out on Dexter Jackson and Will Demps.

    FRANCHISE PLAYER: None.

    TRANSITION PLAYER: None.

    UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: CB Ralph Brown; LB Sam Cowart; PK Paul
    Edinger; C Melvin Fowler; QB Shaun Hill; DE Lance Johnstone; LB Keith
    Newman; LB Raonall Smith; RB Moe Williams; C Cory Withrow.

    RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: WR Nate Burleson.

    EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS FREE AGENTS: OG Adam Goldberg.

    PLAYERS RE-SIGNED: S Willie Offord; WR Koren Robinson.

    PLAYERS ACQUIRED: FB Joey Goodspeed; LB Ben Leber; PK Ryan Longwell; RB
    Chester Taylor; OG Jason Whittle.

    PLAYERS LOST: RB Michael Bennett; S Corey Chavous; QB Daunte Culpepper;
    OG Toniu Fonoti; CB Brian Williams.
    [move]"Our day WILL come!! I just hope I LIVE long enough to see it!"[/move]

  2. #2
    Jarlvik2006's Avatar
    Jarlvik2006 is offline Rookie
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    I think his wife may have been a big influence on his decision. Can you imagine having everyone know that your husband got "jiggy" on a boat with tramps? That and the fact that he didn't fell comfortable learning the nuances of the WCO.
    Good bye and good luck Daunte!
    I m Watching You- You may not see me, you may not hear me, but I m watching you...

  3. #3
    FedjeViking is offline Ring of Fame
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    Granted, but the DC part was not exactly the reason for this thread.

    Everyone keeps asking who stayed, went, was traded, is coming in, etc.

    I found the last part of this article the most informative and helpful on these subjects.
    [move]"Our day WILL come!! I just hope I LIVE long enough to see it!"[/move]

  4. #4
    Benet's Avatar
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    Good post Fedje. Certainly helps to have an easy reference to the Vikings off-season moves.

  5. #5
    Jarlvik2006's Avatar
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    Sorry Fedje- I'm so used to scanning all the other sites that I'd already seen the new stuff. Just has to get my two cents in on the CPEPP issues.
    I'll try to watch the threads because I know that everybody is ALL PEPPED OUT. I'll learn.
    I m Watching You- You may not see me, you may not hear me, but I m watching you...

  6. #6
    campstove is offline Training Camp
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    wow 26 mill in cap space and we lost more that we gained ,nice

  7. #7
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    In summary, this is what I see.

    We let go 3 familiar faces, and we have replaced them with an unknown LB, a backup RB (who I think is a starter), a well known and accurate K, and a possible (in the works) familiar face/name at G (Hutch).

    We signed Whittle (G), that we think will contend for starting a job.

    Assuming we resign what will now be our 2nd WR, Nate.

    We tried to sign some guys, but we have lost the mistique to attract them for visits even. The Bengals beat us out. Up until DC wanted out, we could still attract FAs, now it is more difficult, new coach and new owner, nobody knows what to expect. Money talks, but we got to get them in the door and we got to spend it.

    We also have a starting QB who was benched in the WCO and replaced by Griese (a FA on the market) before being signed in MN.

    The extremely positive note out of all this, is that we haven't looked or acted desperate. I think the coaching staff has really evaluated the guys we have, and stuck to their vision. They let go of the guys they thought were expendable and picked up a few guys that they THINK will make our team better. I don't think they flinched once.

  8. #8
    FedjeViking is offline Ring of Fame
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    As far as what I can tell here is a list of what's left in FA.
    Please feel free to tell me if I have anything wrong. :lol:
    Ooppps, someone put this in another thread!

    Quarterback
    Kerry Collins
    Aaron Brooks
    Brian Griese
    Anthony Wright
    Tommy Maddox
    Jamie Martin
    Jay Fiedler

    Running Back
    Najeh Davenport
    Anthony Thomas
    Antowain Smith
    Sammy Morris
    Maurice Morris
    Lamar Gordon
    Stephen Davis

    Fullback
    Fred Beasley
    Tony Richardson
    Mack Strong
    Jerald Sowell
    Daimon Shelton

    Wide Receiver
    Keyshawn Johnson
    Antonio Chatman
    Quincy Morgan
    Peerless Price
    Tim Dwight

    Tight End
    Jeb Putzier
    Chris Baker
    Mark Campbell

    Kicker
    Adam Vinatieri
    Todd Peterson
    Paul Edinger
    Mike Vanderjagt

    Punter
    Jason Baker
    Kyle Richardson
    Tom Rouen
    Tom Tupa
    Sean Landeta

    Guard
    Tutan Reyes
    Ron Stone
    Stephen Neal
    Kendyl Jacox
    Victor Riley

    Offensive Tackle
    Damion McIntosh
    Tom Ashworth
    Jon Runyan
    Brad Hopkins
    Barry Stokes
    Orlando Brown
    Mike Pearson
    Anthony Clement

    Center
    Mike Flanagan
    Jeff Mitchell
    Trey Teague
    Cory Raymer

    Defensive Tackle
    Brenston Buckner
    Sam Adams
    Jason Fisk
    Ron Edwards
    Grady Jackson
    Lional Dalton
    Ed Jasper

    Defensive End
    Lance Johnstone
    DeQuincy Scott
    Brady Smith
    Duane Clemons

    Inside Linebacker
    Ben Taylor
    Rocky Calmus
    Nick Griesen (WLB)
    Earl Holmes
    Sam Cowart
    Chris Claiborne
    Brad Kassell

    Outside Linebacker
    LaVar Arrington
    Na'il Diggs
    Julian Peterson
    Jamie Sharper
    Tommy Polley
    Chad Brown
    Jamie Winborn
    Peter Boulware
    Keith Newman
    Barrett Green
    Kevin Bentley
    Warrick Holdman

    Cornerback
    Charles Woodson
    Ahmed Plummer
    Eric Warfield
    Duane Starks
    Ty Law
    Will Allen
    Andre Dyson
    Tyrone Poole
    Dexter McCleon
    Reggie Howard

    Safety
    Idrees Bashir
    Marcus Coleman
    Tebucky Jones
    Brent Alexander
    Lance Schulters
    Tank Williams
    Keion Carpenter
    Deke Cooper
    Mel Mitchell
    [move]"Our day WILL come!! I just hope I LIVE long enough to see it!"[/move]

  9. #9
    FedjeViking is offline Ring of Fame
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    "snowinapril" wrote:
    In summary, this is what I see.

    We let go 3 familiar faces, and we have replaced them with an unknown LB, a backup RB (who I think is a starter), a well known and accurate K, and a possible (in the works) familiar face/name at G (Hutch).

    We signed Whittle (G), that we think will contend for starting a job.

    We resiigned what will now be our 2nd WR, Nate.

    We tried to sign some guys, but we have lost the mistique to attract them for visits even. The Bengals beat us out. Up until DC wanted out, we could still attract FAs, now it is more difficult, new coach and new owner, nobody knows what to expect. Money talks, but we got to get them in the door and we got to spend it.

    We also have a starting QB who was benched in the WCO and replaced by Griese (a FA on the market) before being signed in MN.

    The extremely positive note out of all this, is that we haven't looked or acted desperate. I think the coaching staff has really evaluated the guys we have, and stuck to their vision. They let go of the guys they thought were expendable and picked up a few guys that they THINK will make our team better. I don't think they flinched once.
    That about sums it up april! I added who was available to this thread so as to make it easier to discuss who would fill in the spaces we need.
    [move]"Our day WILL come!! I just hope I LIVE long enough to see it!"[/move]

  10. #10
    Mr. Purple's Avatar
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    Re: Inside Slant-Latest News

    Sorry to play the "Patriots" card...but I mean...the Vikings are a "Team" now. Noone on this team from here on out should wine or complain. I feel like we've weeded out all the bad apples and what we have left is a team poised for greatness.

    Theres NOTHING greater then a Florida Gator!
    "I promise everyone this. When Childress is let go in two years I can honestly say this.
    "I am not surprised"."-PurplePackerEater

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