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singersp
06-08-2006, 01:21 PM
OTAs continue for Vikings

June 7, 2006

Author: Mike Wobschall, vikings.com

Today was Organized Team Activity (OTA) number nine of 14 for the Vikings and it was a beautiful day to be outside with a football. Sunny skies and comfortable temperatures made conditions almost ideal for the team's workout.

Although they are "optional" team activities, most players across the league tend to show up to work out with their team as training camp quickly approaches. Although participation wasn't 100%, the Vikings had no unexcused absences today.

The OTAs are essentially practices. The workouts are run much like a minicamp, as coaches use the time to install their schemes and familiarize themselves with players.

Here are a few observations from today's action...

Nickel back position battle

Clearly one position battle that will be waged during training camp is for the third (nickel) cornerback position. Today, Devonte Edwards took most of the snaps as the teams first option at nickel back. Whitaker will also compete for time there and so will former Ohio State standout Dustin Fox.

Hosack and Whitaker look impressive

Receiver Aaron Hosack and defensive back Ronyell Whitaker both appear to be doing very well during the OTAs. Hosack caught quite a few balls in traffic during the team's seven-on-seven drill and Whitaker came inches away from grabbing a Mike McMahon pass right from thin air.

At 6-5, 210 pounds, Hosack provides quarterbacks with a giant target and he serves as an imposing force to much smaller defensive backs.

Rotating backers

The coaching staff continues to rotate the linebacking corps, trying to find the right combination. The Vikings first team defense spent a lot of time in the nickel formation today, with Napolean Harris and E.J. Henderson the primary linebackers on the field. When in the regular 4-3 defense, both Chad Greenway and Ben Leber rotated in with Harris and Henderson.

Catch of the day

Catch of the day honors go to Marcus Robinson for his acrobatic and crafty grab on the right sideline during the two-minute drill portion of practice today. Robinson ran a 15-yard out route. Immediately upon turning out and looking the ball was above his head. Robinson quickly moved his hands above his head and cleanly snagged the ball from the air and got out of bounds.

Infirmary report

The team is fairly healthy at this point in the off-season. Troy Williamson is not participating due to very minor skin grafting procedure. Ciatrick Fason was limping around with a sore right hamstring.

NFL NEWS

Some ramblings from around the NFL...

Drama in Tennessee

The ongoing saga in Tennessee involving veteran quarterback Steve McNair and the Titans continues to take twists and turns. There has been much speculation that the 11-year veteran will end up playing in Baltimore for former Vikings offensive coordinator Brian Billick. Reports indicate that the two sides had reached a tentative agreement that would pay McNair $12 million over five years. McNair is currently scheduled to make $9 million this season.

The drama began to flare up when the Titans refused to allow McNair to workout at the team's practice facility. Worries that an injury would cost McNair the season and the Titans $23.46 million this season seemed to be the motive for disallowing the 2003 co-MVP the right to workout at his own team's facility.

In response to the ban, McNair's agent and the NFLPA filed a grievance on behalf of McNair claiming that the team had breached contract by barring the player from working out. Eventually an arbitrator ruled in favor of McNair and the quarterback has been informed that he is welcome back to the facility to work out.

Complicating the matter even further is the fact that McNair's agent, Bus Cook, was given permission during the draft to negotiate an agreement with the Ravens. The Titans also drafted former Texas Longhorns superstar Vince Young as well.

Currently, the two sides seem to be at a stalemate. The Titans maintain they are interested in keeping McNair in Tennessee, but that they want to receive adequate value if they are to part with a player that led them to a Super Bowl.

Cook has stated it's time for the Titans to do something with the passer.

"Keep him under the contract he has, trade him, cut him or start trying to get a new deal done with the starting point being what's on the table from the Ravens," Cook said.

More Titans news

Another headline involving the Tennessee Titans came courtesy of Louisiana-Pacific Corp. and Titans owner Bud Adams. The two sides reached a ten-year, $30 million dollar agreement for naming rights of the team's stadium.

Adelphia Business Solutions had originally claimed naming rights to the stadium (Adelphia Coliseum) but relinquished the rights upon filing for bankruptcy.

The stadium will now be called LP Field.

Saints and Patriots trade former 2003 draft picks

The New Orleans Saints and New England Patriots agreed to swap underachieving early-round draft picks earlier this week. The trade will be official pending approval from the league office.

New England receives defensive tackle Johnathan Sullivan in exchange for speedster wide receiver Bethel Johnson. Both players have been disappointments after being chosen early in the 2003 draft. Johnson was taken in the second round with the 45th overall pick and had just 30 receptions in three seasons and only four in 2005. Sullivan was the sixth pick in that draft, but tallied just a single sack in 14 games last season.

Return of Turley

The Kansas City Chiefs and former offensive tackle Kyle Turley are negotiating a deal that would bring the 260-pound blocker into Chiefs camp as a tight end. Turley would compliment perennial All-Pro tight end Tony Gonzalez and serve as a viable blocking option at the tight end position.

Levens to retire as a Packer

The Green Bay Packers and veteran running back Dorsey Levens will reportedly reach an agreement that will allow the 12-year veteran to retire as a Packer. Levens spent 1994-2001 with the team before going on to play for the Eagles and Giants. Levens rushed for 3,937 yards as a Packer in his career.

OTAs continue for Vikings (http://www.vikings.com/news_detail_objectname_OTAReport6706.html)

Wiggles67
06-08-2006, 06:35 PM
Levens to retire as a Packer

The Green Bay Packers and veteran running back Dorsey Levens will reportedly reach an agreement that will allow the 12-year veteran to retire as a Packer. Levens spent 1994-2001 with the team before going on to play for the Eagles and Giants. Levens rushed for 3,937 yards as a Packer in his career.

my god I didnt even realize this guy was still around!?

COJOMAY
06-08-2006, 10:34 PM
In talking about the nickel back position, I find it odd that Cedric Griffin our 2nd pick, isn't mentioned. According to the draft information he was suppose to be playing there:

Vikings needed help in the secondary after losing two veterans in free agency. Griffin is a big corner with some experience at safety. He should play in nickel and dime defenses early in his career.
What's the deal here? Anyone know?

COJOMAY
06-08-2006, 11:21 PM
I'm still looking for an answer here if anyone knows.

cajunvike
06-08-2006, 11:25 PM
"COJOMAY" wrote:

In talking about the nickel back position, I find it odd that Cedric Griffin our 2nd pick, isn't mentioned. According to the draft information he was suppose to be playing there:

Vikings needed help in the secondary after losing two veterans in free agency. Griffin is a big corner with some experience at safety. He should play in nickel and dime defenses early in his career.
What's the deal here? Anyone know?

He's probably penciled in as a safety...especially since the Vikes will most likely move Dustin Fox to CB.