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Thread: Q&A

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    Q&A

    Zuglad has a blog where you can fire away with your Vikings-related questions and he'll post the answers on Tuesday or sooner.

    The Q&A
    Monday, February 12th, 2007
    by Judd Zulgad
    Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain

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    Re: Q&A

    Due to the overwhelming discussion in this thread, i felt obligated to post the sequel.

    A few answers
    Monday, February 12th, 2007
    by Judd Zulgad

    Good job, for the most part, on the questions today. I figured I’d get a start answering about 10 of them tonight. As usual, thanks for the interest.

    Q. Is there any sign of the Vikings possibly trading some players for receivers?
    If so, any big name receivers being talked about?


    A. So far the Vikings haven’t been tied to any big-name receivers when it comes to trade rumors. Considering major trades in the NFL are rare, it’s not as if there are a bunch of big name receivers having their names thrown around in talks. Randy Moss and Jerry Porter of Oakland come to mind as two guys who could be available but it’s hard to believe Brad Childress has any interest. I’d say the Vikings will make a play for a receiver(s) during free agency and at some point during the draft. Donte Stallworth might command too much on the open market. One guy to keep an eye on is Drew Bennett of the Titans.

    Q. I heard that new defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier wants to institute some principles of the Bears’ old 46 defense. Do you think the Vikings have the talent and flexibility to do this?

    A. The immediate answer would be no. The Vikings struggled to get to the quarterback for much of last season — end Kenechi Udeze had zero sacks — and one key in the 46 is to apply pressure. But Frazier, who played under 46 guru Buddy Ryan in Chicago during the mid-1980s, might be willing to send more players at the opposing QB to make sure there is a sufficient pass rush. It also should help to get Erasmus James back after he missed almost all of 2006 because of a knee injury. But the Vikings certainly need to add some help at end.

    Q. In what areas do you think the Vikings can get help in free agency and how much money will they have available?

    A. First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million. As for the free agency question and how much of that will go toward players on the open market, I’d say this: Don’t expect a spending spree like we saw last offseason. A lot of teams are well under a cap that has been set at $109 million in 2007 and thus have the ability to keep pending free agents if they want. I’d say the Vikings will take the longest look at receivers. They have no real choice. On defense, it will be interesting to see if the Vikings attempt to keep middle linebacker Napoleon Harris. Such a move would tie up even more money.

    Q. What will be different in regards to play calling in 2007 under Brad Childress and will the quarterback get more autonomy regardless of who is playing that position?

    A. This is the million dollar question. One would think that Childress has spent much of his time since the season ended reviewing what went wrong with this offense. Sure, the execution by the players wasn’t great but it’s ridiculous to pin this on all the guys wearing uniforms. The play calling wasn’t where it needed to be either and the hope for everyone who has to watch this team on a regular basis is that the proper adjustments will be made. That being said, I can’t see Tarvaris Jackson, Brooks Bollinger or anyone else getting much more autonomy. It will be interesting, though, because if Childress’ offense sputters out of the gate in 2007, no one will be able to blame Brad Johnson.

    Q. What is the buzz about the QB position? The Vikings aren’t making a run at drafting Brady Quinn or signing free-agent Jeff Garcia, right?

    A. Childress attempted to downplay the Garcia talk during a radio appearance last week. Considering Garcia’s success in Philly in 2006, and the fact Donovan McNabb should be ready to go next season, I’m thinking Garcia is going to get a big pay day somewhere but it probably won’t be in Minnesota. As well as Garcia played in Philadelphia, go back and look at his performance in Cleveland and Detroit. Signing the veteran wouldn’t be without risk. As for Quinn, there is talk that he might drop in the draft because not everyone needs a QB. This could make him available when the Vikings turn comes up. It’s also when we all learn the amount of faith this franchise has in Jackson. A vote of confidence in Jackson, means that if Quinn is available, the Vikings will take their 15 minutes to work a trade that will land them more picks and perhaps a player.

    Q. Do you think the Vikings have any interest in pairing Antoine Winfield with free agent Nate Clements (Bills) at cornerback?

    A. Nope. The Vikings’ starting corners in 2007 will be Winfield and Cedric Griffin. Griffin had a solid rookie season and earned himself a place atop the depth chart.

    Q. Are the Vikings possibly looking at bringing in another running back and taking some of the work off Chester Taylor?

    A. Childress gave no indication this season that he favors a two running back system. Taylor was his guy in 2006 and figures to remain in that role in nearly every situation in 2007. (Mewelde Moore does have the third-down pass catching role.) Remember, Taylor had very little wear and tear before coming to Minnesota, so this should not be a major issue. Yet.

    Q. Any chance the Vikings can sign Napoleon Harris? If not who is going to play middle linebacker?

    A. Touched on this one briefly but it’s a good question. This figures to be a long shot, considering Harris could be in line for a big contract after rebounding to have a solid 2006. The Vikings already have made big investments in E.J. Henderson, Ben Leber and Chad Greenway. Greenway will return after missing his entire rookie season because of a knee injury. If Harris departs, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Henderson shifted to the middle, with Greenway on the weakside and Leber remaining on the strongside. I know Henderson failed the last time he tried to play in the middle but this is a new defense and Henderson is now making enough money that big things should be expected of him.

    Q. With the way the Marcus Robinson situation was handled on Christmas Eve do the Vikings think that will hurt them in free agency?

    A. You don’t really think the Vikings are going to tell you the truth on this one, right? Robinson, you might recall, was informed on Christmas Eve that he would be cut. I don’t see how free agents, and their agents, won’t be impacted when they consider the Vikings. It’s human nature. (I’d love to hear the Vikings try to explain themselves on this one when a player they like asks exactly what happened.) In my opinion, of all the mistakes the Vikings made in 2006 on and off the field this one was the worst. So if the Vikings are running neck-and-neck with another team for a free agent this one could bite them. Of course, if they are willing to write the biggest check it might not matter.

    Q. Which Vikings players are the most approachable when you need to talk to them for a story and which players rarely or never speak to the press?

    A. Everyone knows about the guys who talk all the time (you see ‘em quoted several times a week and the list includes Birk, Richardson, Brad Johnson, Sharper, etc.) but one guy who doesn’t get much publicity but gives very thoughtful answers is Darrion Scott. He’s not always a guy who wants to talk after losses but approach him in the middle of the week for his perspective on how the defense is playing or why something worked/or didn’t and he can be very good. Another guy who was very entertaining was Dwight Smith. Smith isn’t afraid to challenge a question by a reporter but there’s nothing wrong with that. Get Smith on a role and he can be extremely candid and at times very funny. Some guys don’t talk much but this doesn’t make them bad guys. Offensive tackle Marcus Johnson is a prime example. Johnson quit talking to the media early in his rookie season and hasn’t talked since. But Johnson has been consistent about it and seems as if he’s just not comfortable dealing with the media. It’s funny because one of Johnson’s best friends on the team is guard Artis Hicks, who like Scott is very articulate and thoughtful in his answers. One guy who I don’t think enjoys talking one bit is Chester Taylor. It’s funny because when I covered the Packers (I know, I know you guys hate to read that) Ahman Green could be incredibly moody and really seemed to despise the press. Taylor couldn’t be put in that category, but I never sense he really enjoys seeing the media approach.

    That’s all for now.

    Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain

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    Re: Q&A

    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million.
    ??? That's about half of what is being reported elsewhere.

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

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    Re: Q&A

    "singersp" wrote:
    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million.
    ??? That's about half of what is being reported elsewhere.
    I was thinking the same thing, but it's before adjustments.
    Personally, I think this is a more reliable source than the other sources that have been reporting.
    Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain

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    Re: Q&A

    "Prophet" wrote:
    "singersp" wrote:
    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million.
    ??? That's about half of what is being reported elsewhere.
    I was thinking the same thing, but it's before adjustments.
    Personally, I think this is a more reliable source than the other sources that have been reporting.
    It would take a lot of adjusting to get the numbers up to the $23 - $31 mil being reported elsewhere.

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

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    Re: Q&A

    "singersp" wrote:
    "Prophet" wrote:
    "singersp" wrote:
    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million.
    ??? That's about half of what is being reported elsewhere.
    I was thinking the same thing, but it's before adjustments.
    Personally, I think this is a more reliable source than the other sources that have been reporting.
    It would take a lot of adjusting to get the numbers up to the $23 - $31 mil being reported elsewhere.
    I'm not saying they are going to adjust them to the inaccurate numbers.
    I'm saying that his statement doesn't leave any wiggle room, it is a statement:

    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million...
    That does not appear to be a guess based on how it was written.
    Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain

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    Re: Q&A

    "Prophet" wrote:
    "singersp" wrote:
    "Prophet" wrote:
    "singersp" wrote:
    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million.
    ??? That's about half of what is being reported elsewhere.
    I was thinking the same thing, but it's before adjustments.
    Personally, I think this is a more reliable source than the other sources that have been reporting.
    It would take a lot of adjusting to get the numbers up to the $23 - $31 mil being reported elsewhere.
    I'm not saying they are going to adjust them to the inaccurate numbers.
    I'm saying that his statement doesn't leave any wiggle room, it is a statement:

    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million...
    That does not appear to be a guess based on how it was written.
    I'm agree with you. I'm just wondering how others came up with their numbers. Way off the mark IMO. Zeus posted one that claimed $31.5 mil as of January 2007.

    That number sounds more realistic based on the signings & contract extensions we had this year.

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

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    Re: Q&A

    "singersp" wrote:
    "Prophet" wrote:
    "singersp" wrote:
    "Prophet" wrote:
    "singersp" wrote:
    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million.
    ??? That's about half of what is being reported elsewhere.
    I was thinking the same thing, but it's before adjustments.
    Personally, I think this is a more reliable source than the other sources that have been reporting.
    It would take a lot of adjusting to get the numbers up to the $23 - $31 mil being reported elsewhere.
    I'm not saying they are going to adjust them to the inaccurate numbers.
    I'm saying that his statement doesn't leave any wiggle room, it is a statement:

    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million...
    That does not appear to be a guess based on how it was written.
    I'm agree with you. I'm just wondering how others came up with their numbers. Way off the mark IMO. Zeus posted one that claimed $31.5 mil as of January 2007.

    That number sounds more realistic based on the signings & contract extensions we had this year.
    Given that the average sports journalist has an IQ barely into the triple digits my guess is they just took some numbers and tossed them into the mix without integrating the contract negotiations done at that time.
    Zuglad is a drone like the rest of them, but appears to have a reasonable head on his shoulders.
    That puts some light on making more realistic speculations during the time of the year where people like to make mock drafts based on assumptions overlaid on assumptions overlaid on assumptions.
    Typically not a good way to go about your business.
    Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain

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    Re: Q&A

    Q. Do you think the Vikings have any interest in pairing Antoine Winfield with free agent Nate Clements (Bills) at cornerback?

    A. Nope. The Vikings’ starting corners in 2007 will be Winfield and Cedric Griffin. Griffin had a solid rookie season and earned himself a place atop the depth chart.
    I guess that sums that up!

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    Re: Q&A

    "singersp" wrote:
    "Prophet" wrote:
    "singersp" wrote:
    "Prophet" wrote:
    "singersp" wrote:
    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million.
    ??? That's about half of what is being reported elsewhere.
    I was thinking the same thing, but it's before adjustments.
    Personally, I think this is a more reliable source than the other sources that have been reporting.
    It would take a lot of adjusting to get the numbers up to the $23 - $31 mil being reported elsewhere.
    I'm not saying they are going to adjust them to the inaccurate numbers.
    I'm saying that his statement doesn't leave any wiggle room, it is a statement:

    First off, the Vikings are $12.4 million under the cap at this moment. Adjustments still need to be made before the new league year begins on March 2 and that number likely will go up but right now it’s $12.4 million...
    That does not appear to be a guess based on how it was written.
    I'm agree with you. I'm just wondering how others came up with their numbers. Way off the mark IMO. Zeus posted one that claimed $31.5 mil as of January 2007.

    That number sounds more realistic based on the signings & contract extensions we had this year.
    That was as of early January.
    The $12.4 million is the latest I've seen, which is probably more accurate.
    I doubt the impact of the extensions to McKinnie, Henderson and KWill were reflected in the early number.

    =Z=

    Thanks to Josdin for the awesome sig!

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