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  1. #21
    RK.'s Avatar
    RK. is offline Ring of Fame Rally Cross II Champion
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    Many have speculated that director of college scouting Scott Studwell would take Foley's place. On Saturday afternoon, owner Zygi Wilf announced that Studwell signed a three-year contract extension, but did not specify what his role would be.
    I was glad to read that. I like Studwell and think he has done a fine job for the Vikes. :smile:


  2. #22
    Mr. Purple's Avatar
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    "viks_fan21" wrote:
    "slinkey" wrote:
    well, its like i tell my stockbroker....i pay you to not lose money...not even for a day....I CAN LOSE MONEY...Smoot, same thing, what are we paying him for? so he can say, well noone person can cover smith?
    Champ Bailey won't shut down Steve Smith. I blame Cotrell for not giving Smoot any safety help. I agree that Smoot wasn't too sharp (actually he was pathetic), but still, he didn't get very much of a chance.

    ehh didnt wanna have to go through this again but heres my take.

    Smoot was Over hyped coming in. Alot of pressure was placed on him bye the Media and fans. Hes a great CB but hes not god of the position in any way shape or form. (I'm a supporter too)He played in one of the worst defensive schemes out there. Had a off year due to injury.Is still wrongfully blaimed for the "Steve Smith Show". This guy has caught alot of bad rap for reasons unknown. Everyone loved his mouth before the season started. Everyone was calling for his head after Carloina. What went wrong? Well he was horribly coached on a off year .I really think Smoot is gonna turn his game around and play solid, like his Washington days.Alot of people in the NFL last year had a tough time covering smith. Ask the Bears defense.

    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

  3. #23
    COJOMAY is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    From the official Vikings Website:

    Mini-camp Notes and Quotes

    Author: Mike Wobschall

    This weekend, the Minnesota Vikings are in the midst of their second minicamp of the 2006 off-season. Today the team practiced twice and the camp will continue tomorrow and into Monday. This weekend will be Head Coach Brad Childress' first look at his full squad, including the 2006 draft class that features first-round (17th overall) selection Chad Greenway and second-round selection Tarvaris Jackson. 17 undrafted rookie free agents have been invited to camp as well, including former Minnesota Golden Gopher linebacker Kyle McKenzie.

    Saturday's session opened with a 10:30am practice that concluded at 12:30pm. The afternoon session began at 3:10pm and ended just shortly ahead of schedule at about 3:00pm. Four members of the Vikings roster are not scheduled to participate. Wide receiver Troy Williamson, after a minor surgical procedure on his hip, will sit out the three-day camp. He was in attendance, however, observing drills and following along with a playbook. Three players are currently on NFL Europe rosters and will not be at Winter Park for camp - they are: Sean Bubin (T), Aaron Hosack (WR), and Roynell Whitaker (CB). Running back Mewelde Moore is participating in camp this weekend despite his wrist injury - he will be wearing a brace for the duration of the weekend for protection.

    This weekend's camp will give coaches and the media their first look at some players that the team hopes will fill key roles when the 2006 regular season begins. Clearly the team had prioritized addressing two specific positions -- linebacker and offensive line -- and it appears the task may have been accomplished. After drafting Greenway in the first round and adding free agent Ben Leber from San Diego, competition has been stiffened at the linebacker position. The team addressed the offensive line during the off-season by acquiring one of the league's premier offensive guards in the game, Steve Hutchinson. They also traded for guard Artis Hicks and drafted center Ryan Cook in the second round to add depth. Other acquisitions during the off-season have added even more depth at the position.

    Second-round selection Cedric Griffin was in attendance, as well as fellow secondary member Greg Blue, a rookie drafted in the fifth round out of Georgia. Rookie Ray Edwards, Jr. was also in camp. He was drafted in the fourth round out of Purdue.

    Childress was relatively short in his remarks to the press following the first practice. He was happy, however, with how the first session went.

    "All in all, a good start to it," Childress said. "You have a recalibration period that everybody kind of goes through, along with 25 new faces, new bodies. The veterans are doing a nice job of taking the lead, setting the tempo, and I thought for those guys to be good leaders, those rookies need to be good followers, and I thought they were pretty well on task."

    There were two minor injuries the team sustained during the first session this morning. Cornerback Fred Smoot tweaked his knee, but did partake in the afternoon session. Marvin Ward, a second-year defensive back out of Northwestern, injured his hamstring and did not participate in the afternoon session. During the afternoon session, fullback Joey Goodspeed seemed to have injured his knee, but the extent of his injury was not immediately known.

    Here are a few other observations from Saturday's two practices at Winter Park:

    Getting started
    Practice was slated to begin at 10:30am, but many players began entering the indoor practice facility just before 10:00am. The defense was dressed in white for the two sessions, while the offense wore the dark purple uniforms. The morning session began at 10:32am.

    Practicing fast
    The veteran's minicamp held last month seemed to feature rather fast-paced practices, but Saturday's action seemed even more up-tempo. Childress and his staff did comment during the veteran's minicamp about the importance of practicing fast, and the same philosophy seemed to be in play on Saturday.

    "The coaches want us to practice fast so we get used to playing fast," linebacker E.J. Henderson commented after the afternoon session.

    As advertised
    The report on rookie Tarvaris Jackson is that he can make throws that other quarterbacks just can't make. It appeared to be true upon observing him on Saturday. He has clearly the strongest arm of any of the Vikings four quarterbacks, and that was obvious to anyone watching.
    Improving returns
    Although Koren Robinson represented the Vikings in the Pro Bowl as a kick returner last season, one of the first things some of the players worked on was kick returns. Joining Robinson in returning kicks was Adimchinobe Echemandu, Ciatrick Fason, Mathis Wendell and Ryan Hoag.

    For what it's worth
    Certainly no decisions will be made during or after this minicamp as to who will fill starting roles on the team. But, it is fun to note who is playing with the first team and what position they are occupying.

    Napolean Harris spent the majority of his time during team drills as the middle linebacker on the first team. Ben Leber and E.J. Henderson played the outside positions. Erasmus James played with the first-team defensive line, along with Kenechi Udeze, Pat Williams and Kevin Williams.

    Artis Hicks played right guard with the first team. Marcus Johnson was at right tackle, with Matt Birk, Steve Hutchinson and Bryant McKinnie playing center, left guard and left tackle, respectively.

    Seven on seven
    One of my favorite parts of practice is the seven on seven drill. This drill pits a quarterback and six receivers against seven defensive players. Brad Johnson typically excels at this drill as he uses his precision passing and solid decision making to complete passes. The defense also played well, however, and often times kept pass receivers from making catches and gaining yards after the catch.

    The seven on seven drills for the Vikings have typically featured a flurry of short-yardage routes, especially to running backs out of the backfield. This is a trait of the west coast offense, which of course Childress is employing in Minnesota.

    Chester Taylor, Mewelde Moore and Ciatrick Fason are getting most of the first-team reps during the drill, but Taylor seems to be getting even a few more than Moore and Fason. It's hard not to draw comparisons to Bryant Westbrook when watching Taylor, at least in the way the teams chooses to use the six-year veteran acquired from the Baltimore Ravens this off-season.

    "I played with Chester in Baltimore," receiver Marcus Robinson said after practice this afternoon, "and he's a great back. He can move the pile, catch the ball, and he's shifty. You saw today where he made a catch down the sideline coming out of the backfield. He's a great back and I think he can carry the load for us."

    Time for teaching and learning
    The coaches weren't the only ones doing the coaching during Saturday's two practice sessions. Childress made mention after the morning practice of veterans providing leadership to the younger players during the weekend and into the season - and that happened on Saturday. Many times I spotted a veteran helping a younger player with pass routes, technique and fundamentals.

    During the seven on seven drill, second-year receiver Chris Jones appeared to have beaten linebacker Napolean Harris on a seam route, only to have Harris come in at the last moment and bat the ball out of his hands. Upon coming back to the huddle, Travis Taylor spoke with Jones for a couple of minutes and was showing him how to better position himself to avoid defenders knocking the ball away. Jones made a graceful catch on his next route and acknowledged Taylor on his way back to the huddle.

    Hurry-up field goal
    One interesting drill the Vikings executed took place at the very end of the early session. 24 seconds were placed on the game clock and Childress instructed the team to run one play followed by a field goal attempt. The first attempt resulted in place-kicker Ryan Longwell hitting the goalpost with eight seconds remaining. On the team's second try, Longwell booted a field goal through the uprights with seven seconds remaining.
    Kentucky Vikes Fan

    When you require nothing, you get nothing; when you expect nothing, you will find nothing; when you embrace nothing, all you will have is nothing.

  4. #24
    COJOMAY is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    Interview With Brad Johnson at Mini-Camp:

    Q: What are your impressions of Tarvaris Jackson?
    A: I remember when I was a rookie 14 years ago. You'd go to the line and hear "double right check," and you're like "Check what?" There's a lot to learn; they throw it at you fast. Obviously he was with Reggie Barlow, who I was with in Tampa, and he helped him with concepts and things like that, so I think that did help him progress. Obviously he's a very talented kid. He wants to learn. He listens, and that's probably the greatest attribute that he has right now, especially as a rookie, that he's open to learning. The more he learns the system, the more he'll be able to create different types of throws and the better he'll become. But for the first day, he did quite well.

    Q: Have you had a chance to talk to him?
    A: Right now it's been kind of brief. Obviously I just met him this morning. I've heard a lot of great compliments about him. The big thing right now is just to sit back and learn, learn from your mistakes, learn from mistakes other players are making, and just keep getting better. The more time that we have in the film room and the more time we have on the field, the better he'll become, but right now there's being a lot that's being thrown at him pretty fast. Through time he'll become much better, but for the first day he did quite well.

    Q: Talk about your overall impressions of the first day and how things are progressing.
    A: Yeah, there were a lot of new players today, so it kind of does throw some of the looks off, but in general, I thought from the veterans it was a pretty good day. The tempo was there. I think there is a lot of improvement that can be made. A lot of players retained what they learned in that first mini-camp. Obviously that was four weeks ago, but I thought guys retained pretty well. I think it's just about getting more reps, more reps and learning the terminology. The plays are very similar from system to system; it's just mostly terminology and what the coaches want from each particular play.

    Q: Do you feel more comfortable with your role at this point than you did a couple months ago?
    A: No, I think I've played, if you watch me, it's always the same. I love playing; I love working. I love being a part of meetings and looking for different ways to attack different defenses. I can't get enough of it. I draw plays up at night; I bring them in here. I can't talk enough football. My wife gets tired of me. I love it, and I think enthusiasm goes a long way. Sometimes you need to fake it, but there's no fake to it. I enjoy it.

    Q: What's your take on how much this team has improved?
    A: It's hard to say. If you ask every team, they're going to say they've improved, whether it's through the draft or free agency. I can't sit here and say that one guy is going to tell you they regressed. We did make some moves. We feel like offensively we made some huge strides. Obviously getting Matt Birk back is huge, and then bringing in Steve Hutchinson. Last year we had at least 10 new starters on the offense, at least 10. Bryant McKinnie was the only guy that started (all 16 games). We had three guys start at different positions last year. I do feel like it's a strong nucleus. I think the biggest thing now is getting used to the terminology and taking it to another level. The tempo is pretty strong in practice. It's quick, and I feel like great things can be in front of us, but we have a long ways to go before we can get to that kind of talk.

    Q: What's the communication process like with the new coaches?
    A: There are a lot of changes that have been taking place from knocking down walls to putting in playbooks. Obviously the first few weeks here I've been mostly with my quarterbacks coach Kevin Rogers and (Offensive Coordinator) Darrell Bevell. The more time that I've gotten with Brad Childress has been more in mini-camps, and over the next few weeks, especially in June, I'll get to spend more time with Brad. It's probably more meeting room time. That's the kind of time I need with him more than the on-field stuff, just to kind of go over concepts, just the "Who are you and who am I?" That's really where you build up your trust and your relationships. Obviously there's a lot of respect for what he's done and for what I've done, but really just to kind of get on the same page. I've been in four different systems before; this is my fifth, and I've kind of grown with every play-caller, so I'm looking forward to that.

    Q: How similar is this to Tampa Bay?
    A: It's terminology, west coast terminology. General plays are very similar to can call them whatever you want to. They're all very similar to me. It's just the way you want to call it, and I want to know exactly what you want from that concept. That's the kind of relationship I'm trying to build with the coaches. More than the plays, I need the relationships as far as understanding concepts. I feel like that's where we can grow, as far as quarterback-play-caller relationship. As far as the systems, they're pretty similar to me.

    Q: How key will a healthy, stable offensive line be for you?
    A: The key, like you said, is to stay healthy. But those guys are proven winners; they've been part of some great offenses, some great teams. The big thing is just the timing that we get together now during these OTA days and the mini-camps. We need to set a foundation that we're going to be able to run the ball and then stay away from turnovers in the passing game. We need to be able to get our running game going early in the season, be able to score points early in games and set a tone early.

    Q: Is that going to be the identity, more of a run-first offense?
    A: No, I don't think so. I think whatever's there, we'll take. But we have to be able to create that definitely.

    Q: How is your agent going to handle your current contract?
    A: I love playing the game. I've been a part of different situations all through my career. I've been a rookie free agent, I've been traded, I've been a free agent, I've dealt with different contracts and different situations, and over time those things just take care of themselves. Usually that's just the way I play things out.
    Kentucky Vikes Fan

    When you require nothing, you get nothing; when you expect nothing, you will find nothing; when you embrace nothing, all you will have is nothing.

  5. #25
    COJOMAY is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    Intereview with Chad Greenway At Mini-Camp:

    Q: How did that first interception feel?
    A: It felt good. The first practice was obviously a huge adjustment, just to get the feel for everything and knowing where you're supposed to be on the practice field. The game is extremely fast and there are a lot of adjustments you are trying to make. The second practice I felt a lot better, a lot more comfortable out there. I played a little better I thought and it was just about letting the game slow down a little bit for me and start learning the schemes. It will come eventually, but I feel a lot more comfortable now than I did this morning.

    Q: Were you working with the 3rd-team mainly today?
    A: Yeah. I was mostly with the 2nd team, a little bit with the 1's and a little bit with the 3's. I was kind of all over the place a little bit. It's good for me right now to kind of just get a feel for it and work my way in to wherever I'll fit in.

    Q: What stood out to you on the first day?
    A: Nothing that really stood out to me. I just knew there would be adjustments you'd have to make because they don't really tell you a lot going into practices. You don't know what to expect. When you go out there the first time, you're just trying to be in the right place at the right time and not be the one getting yelled at. That's just the big adjustment that happens no matter where you play or what level. It's the same thing going into college or wherever, so no real surprises I guess.

    Q: Did you have any nerves coming in?
    A: Oh yeah, I was nervous. You're going to be nervous when you're out here for your first time. You're playing with professionals for the first time and you've got some nerves, but you just go out there and play hard and do what you can do and control the things that you can control and you'll be alright.

    Q: You made the switch from nine-man football to Division I, and now you are making the move to the pros. What will be the biggest hurdle?
    A: I think it's just about keeping your game the same. Football is a game where if you can run hard to the ball and tackle people, you can be pretty good. Just keep the game simple, that's what I tried to do going into college was just try to keep the game as simple as possible. Just do what you are supposed to do and do your job first, and then run to the ball and make plays. That's what it's all about, getting the ball carrier down as a linebacker, so that's the way I try to think. Just keep things simple, do your job in the scheme, be a teammate and then try to communicate and run to the ball and have fun.

    Q: You have great body language. Did you learn that in nine-man football?
    A: Yeah, I don't know. It must have been the nine-man football I guess. It was so much more difficult than the 11-man in the NFL. That's a joke.

    Q: What's it like to have the South Dakota connection with Ben Leber?
    A: I never had the chance to meet Ben. I actually saw him run a track meet when I was like an 8th-grader and I was an awe of him. (I thought) this guy is a great athlete and going to Kansas State. I was extremely impressed and then I get a chance to play with him here. It's a pretty cool feeling to get a chance to meet him and know that he's from the same state that I hail from. It's great because it's nice at this level to have somebody, especially as a rookie, that you can kind of count on to know if I've got to be some place he can let me know and give you little secrets and ins to get on the right start. But it's a great opportunity and all of the linebackers have been good. They've been extremely helpful.

    Q: Are you expecting to come in and start and will it be disappointing if you don't?
    A: At this point I'm just trying to learn. I'm just trying to go out there and do the best I can in practice. If that takes me to that place, then that's where it's going to take me. The first hurdle is to learn the defense and know where I need to be. When I learn that and know where I can be, then I can run around and start making plays and just keep the game simple. That's what it all comes back to. If I can do that, I think I'll have a good shot at playing quite a bit.

    Q: Did your mom give you any advice for this weekend?
    A: My parents never really gave me a lot of advice in sports. They just said do it as hard as you can do it, and that's what I try to do. That's really the only advice I could give anybody too.

    Q: Did any of the other veterans give you any grief on day one?
    A: Not really. There haven't been any bumps in the road. There has not really been any guy, I think (Steve) Hutchinson was laughing at me today because I took a shower after the first practice and we practice like an hour later. I guess he's played a little bit of football in his day so he would know what to do. It's just little things. No one has given me any problems. It's just been pretty smooth sailing for all of the rookies coming in.

    Q: You look like you're in good shape. Have you been working out a lot since the college season ended?
    A: I thought I was in great shape, and then we did the pursuit drill six times in a row this morning. You can soon feel like you're out of shape. It's a different type of shape to be in football shape, doing four-second speed bursts rather than doing long sprints like I have been doing. I have been doing a lot of conditioning trying to get ready for this. I think I've helped myself quite a bit but there is still more conditioning and more that I can do.

    Q: Do you have to resist the urge to want to pop somebody out here?
    A: When you play ball for a while, we do the same type of stuff at Iowa. There are certain days when you're in shells or just jerseys, but naturally you want to go out and stick somebody, and that's just in our nature as linebackers and as a defensive player. I think that's what's great about our defense from what I have known so far is that there are a lot of guys out there who want to get physical and be a great defense. That's why it's fun to learn under these guys because they all think the right way and the coaching staff definitely thinks the same way. It's going to be fun and exciting and we'll keep the licks for camp and the season.

    Q: How much do you have to study between now and the July camps?
    A: Coach (Mike) Tomlin tries to keep it simple and tries to keep a small menu as he calls it. That's big, especially for a guy, well everybody is learning a new system now because of the new staff. As we add to it, you've just go to continually study. Now you have to put a bunch of time in because it's all new to you, but as you go it's kind of a steady process of putting things in, four or five things a day or whatever. That process is kind of just continually studying rather than a bulk of stuff at once, which is nice.

    Q: What have you been doing since the draft?
    A: I got a chance to come up here after the draft obviously and I had a chance to get the playbook. I went back to Iowa to try and get all of my things in order and my apartment packed in the back of my Tahoe. I've been trying to get in the book and have a good feel for it when I came up here. I've really kind of had a head start because I already had the playbook. I knew the basics and there is obviously stuff that is going to happen in the course of a practice, motions and different types of things that you haven't seen or they don't explain well in the book or something, and those things are going to happen and get you. I had a pretty good feel for at least the base stuff we had, so now it's just keep adding on to that and then you can eventually just play ball.
    Kentucky Vikes Fan

    When you require nothing, you get nothing; when you expect nothing, you will find nothing; when you embrace nothing, all you will have is nothing.

  6. #26
    singersp's Avatar
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    The report on rookie Tarvaris Jackson is that he can make throws that other quarterbacks just can't make. It appeared to be true upon observing him on Saturday. He has clearly the strongest arm of any of the Vikings four quarterbacks, and that was obvious to anyone watching.
    I just love to read stuff like that. I hope this kid develops into a franchise QB.

    "If at first you don't succeed, parachuting is not for you"

  7. #27
    V4L's Avatar
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    Mewelde hurt his wrist..

    Wow isn't he always hurt?!

  8. #28
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    Sounding pretty good so far.. Let's keep it up boys..

  9. #29
    vikeswin2005's Avatar
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    good read guys thanks

  10. #30
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    Re: Mini-camp press conference and Pics

    "Vikez4Lyfe" wrote:
    Mewelde hurt his wrist..

    Wow isn't he always hurt?!
    Not a biggie. He hurt it during the regular season I'm guessing (it definitely wasn't in the playoffs :grin: ). He just got work done on it now so, by preseason, he's good to go.

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