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Vikings #12 Minnesota Vikings
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Vikings Pulse

Vikings - GZL Training Camp Article
Previous Season Recap (505 words)
The Minnesota Vikings hadn’t won more than 4 games the previous 4 seasons, so winning 7 game last year was a step in the right direction. Though there was a decent start to the season at 3-2 and a strong finish to the season at 4-2… the 5 game losing streak mid-year killed any hope of a playoff appearance.

The Good
One can only wonder what might have been… had the starting job been given to QB Cam Newton. Statistically, it was one Newton’s most efficiently rated season of his career [QB rtg of 92.2] and he had a winning record for the games he played the lion share of snaps.

It’s promising to see a young player grow each season… WR Tyler Boyd in his 3rd season had career bests in receptions [83] and TD’s [8].

The Bad
There were HIGH hopes for HB Latavius Murray when he was acquired from the Miami Dolphins… but in his 3rd season as a pro, his production regressed. With only 2 games where he rushed over 100 yards and only 2 TD’s on the ground there might be concerns whether he can be the bell cow the Vikings had envisioned.

Complete disappointment defines the feeling of what LE Leonard Williams delivered last season… his 5 sacks is a FAR cry from what was expected.

The Ugly
Though there appears to be no easy answer to the sophomore SLUMP QB Carson Wentz experienced, the team remains dedicated to him [only because they are obligated via the HUGE bonus]. There no hiding from the sub 50% completion rate, 11 to 16 TD/INT comparison and a QB rtg of 59.8… the only positive, there’s nowhere to go but up from this past season for Wentz.
In review…
The team attempted to avoid a QB controversy from the start when they acquired QB Cam Newton… but when QB Carson Wentz went down week 1 of the regular season all bets were off. Whether you were in the front office, coaching staff or in the locker-room… there were divided camps on who should be the starting QB. In the end, the playing time was nearly split down the middle and QB Cam Newton came out the winner.

The Vikings can look to their sweep of the Chicago Bears as a HIGHLIGHT, two closely fought games. But, being swept by the Lions & Packers was definitely a LOWLIGHT – the Ying and Yang of the season one could say. The concerning aspect of the losses the team saw this past season has to be the fact that 7 of 9 defeats were by 10 or more points… pretty decisive beat downs. On the other hand, of the 7 victories, the Vikings only beat a team by double digits once. The other aspect of the competition the Vikings faced last season that must be taken into account… only 4 of their opponents had a winning record. In all, the team took steps in the right direction, but still a losing season leaving everyone wanting/expecting more!



Off-Season Recap (1053 words)
The Minnesota Viking entered the Off-Season one of four teams over the cap (-$12.640M)… which drove GM Darryl Breckheimer to post his initial “Trade Block”:
QB Cam Newton = Make an offer
Played roughly half the season (behind Carson Wentz)… had a KILLER season! NUMBERS DON’T LIE: Comp % = 56% / TD’s = 12 / INT’s = 2 / QB rtg = 91

LE Leonard Williams = 1st round pick (current or future)
Former 3rd overall selection… still has a lot of career in front of him!
SPD = 77 / STR = 93 / AGI = 75 / ACC = 86

LG Trent Williams = Make an offer
He’s definitely in the twilight of his career… surprisingly, his attributes make him still a worthy starter (respectable #’s last season: 69 pancakes / 1 sack allowed).

DT Shariff Floyd = Make an offer
Lost his starting job to younger players… prior to that he was getting tackles and 3-4 sacks a season.

FB Manning Owens = Make an offer
BLOCKING MACHINE… can you say PANCAKES!!!

RG Carter Pietarila = Make an offer
Lost his starting job… quick 1st step and respectable blocking attributes (cheap back-up).

Everyone placed on the Trade Block would clear $45.210M and only create a cap hit of $6.170M… the only player that was looking to capture a legit offer was LE Leonard Williams.

The GM decided to NOT exercise tenders on the 4 players that were RFA’s… TE Tyler Mertens, QB Desmond Wade, LT Luke Nguyen & HB Troy Meyer.

• The phone rang immediately… the team received an offer, from the Seahawks, for QB Cam Newton… a 5th round pick (which is all the Vikings could expect to get since he came via Amnesty). The Vikings accepted the offer and were thrilled to see Newton on his way back home (Newton played 10 seasons in Seattle).
• Didn’t take long to find a new home for DE Leonard Williams… the Vikings were seeking 1st value and were able to get pick 1.24 from the San Francisco 49ers.
• Dialog with the Pittsburg Steelers (Tom Collins) began on whether HB Latavius Murray was available… I shared I was looking for 1.26 value [700], where he was drafted 3 season ago.
• Brought in to sure up the right side of the offensive line was RT Sepulveda Wright in exchange for a 1st and 3rd round picks… the Vikings like his key attributes [SPD = 65 / STR = 93 / AGI = 68 / ACC = 80] and the fact he’s VERY young [23 years old]. Knowing Wright was a former 1st rounder [19th pick overall] and has 3 years left on his deal are significant plus factors.
• Vikings acquired WR Will Fuller from the San Francisco 49ers… sending a 2nd & 3rd.
• The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were a constant trade partner this offseason… 4 different trades had numerous picks moving back -n- forth between the teams and these players finding new residency: The Vikings received… MLB Mo Jackson, LE Zeus Bryant & HB Woodrow Carr. The Buccaneers received… HB Latavius Murray, RG Carter Pietarila & WR Will Fuller.
• The Vikings said goodbye to FB manning Owens, though he is arguably one of the best FB’s in the game his contract became hard to justify.
• The Vikings secured the services of LE Cornelius Washington from the Oakland Raiders… hoping for double digit sack contribution the next 2 seasons.
• BIG move… Vikings were looking to bring in a LEGIT target for QB Carson Wentz, and after considering a # of possibilities came to terms on a deal that brought WR Donald Lake.
• The final piece the Vikings were hoping to address… a serious upgrade from Murray, and in short time it was determined Carr wasn’t going to fill what they had hoped to put in place. The Vikings sent HB Woodrow Carr and two 3rd round picks for Carlos Hyde.
• The Vikings trim’d salary with the release of LG Trent Williams & DT Shariff Floyd… Williams cap # was ridiculous and Floyd had fallen out of favor last season and rarely saw the field. Neither player has caught on with another team.
• Similar to last season… the Vikings have brought in a veteran presence @ QB, future Hall of Fame player Josh Freeman signed a 1-year deal ($9M).
• The Vikings LOCKED up RG Zack Martin… 7 years, salary of $38.1 & bonus of $15.19M.
• A difficult move… cutting RE Alejandro Franks, simply a cap casualty. The Vikings were VERY pleased with his production last season… with 42 tackles [13 for a loss] and 4 sacks it was by far Franks best season as a pro.
• To fill out roster requirements… HB Ernie Gillespie, DT Leo Campbell & TE Dion Demetri were sign via Free Agency.


The Draft:
3.29 FS Lucas Bravado – The Vikings have Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in place, so there’s little chance Lucas Bravado sees much playing time (unless there’s an injury). But, this was a HUGE pick-up in the LATE 3rd round… Bravado has quick feet [SPD = 91 / ACC = 91] and fluid hips [AGI = 92]. Maybe not as tall as you’d like @ 5’11”… but he’s not a liability.

3.32 LT Julius Jimenz – Depth… NO CHANCE of starting. Nice size @ 6’5” & 348 lbs… and respectable attributes [SPD = 60 / STR = 90 / AGI = 65 / ACC = 66].

7.11 FB Gil Graham – The Vikings parted ways with last year’s starting FB… so Gil Graham gets the nod and currently has NO completion for the starting role @ FB. Known as an excellent pass & run blocker [PBK = 60 / RBK = 61] Graham also has respectable power [STR = 75 / BTK = 74] and moves well [SPD = 79 / AGI = 76 / ACC = 72].

7.28 LE Buford Hamlin – NOT SIGNED

7.29 SS Ruben Hale-Doyle – NOT SIGNED

There isn’t much else to expect from the Minnesota Vikings this offseason… the cap is TIGHT and with so much movement the focus will be building team chemistry. The Vikings avoided trading away too many future picks (only moved a 3rd while picking up a 6th) and kept the cap hit somewhat minimal [-$6.17M]… which should set the team up well for next years offseason.
Forum Discussion (by D_Breckheimer on 10/12/2017) Replies - 1 :: Views - 20
Vikings - You can RUN but you can't HYDE!
You can RUN but you can't HYDE!




The Minnesota Vikings were determined to acquire a POWER back this offseason… and quickly moved on from HB Latavius Murray (sent him off to the Tampa bay Buccaneers via trade). At some point it appeared the team had settled on HB Woodrow Carr after a failed attempt to bring in HB Riddick Owen (a player GM Darryl Breckheimer had drafted 7 seasons ago). But, it ended up Carr was used as a piece to land HB Carlos Hyde (a player drafted 14th overall 5 seasons ago by the New England Patriots).

The POWER back stands 6’0” and weighs in at 248 lbs… and is recognized as one of the strongest [STR = 81] at his position. A nice 1st step [ACC = 90] and enough speed [SPD = 89] to find his way to the next level of a defense… once past the defensive line, Hyde can break tackles [BTK = 90] and be a threat to pick up large chunks of yards. In 5 seasons Hyde has racked up 6509 yards [with a 4.08 avg] and scored 26 TD’s on the ground [another 3 via the pass reception]. Though it’s not his calling card, for a BIG man he has nice hands [CTH = 69] and can be counted on to catch a ball thrown his way. The only concern (baggage) that accompanies Hyde is the tendency to fumble on occasions.

GM Darryl Breckheimer – “I’m thrilled to bring in a player as talented as Hyde, his accomplishments speak for themselves! The man is solid as a ROCK having missed only 1 game in 5 seasons… he’s gonna fit in nicely and allow us to establish the run to set up the pass.’”

The Minnesota Vikings sent HB Carr and two 3rd round picks for HB Hyde… Hyde is signed for 2 more seasons and will count $4.54M against the cap.
Forum Discussion (by D_Breckheimer on 09/27/2017) Replies - 0 :: Views - 15
Vikings turn to Josh Freeman...

QB Josh Freeman - Brought in to mentor and offer insurance!

The Minnesota Vikings have come to terms with eventual GZL HOF QB Josh Freeman… the deal is for 1 year @ $9M ($3M signing bonus). Currently Freeman sits @ 4th most passing yards and 3rd for TD passes in league history… he spent 9 of his 13 seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before moving on to the Cincinnati Bengals for 3 seasons and last year with the Philadelphia Eagles.

The message from GM Darryl Breckheimer:
We’re excited to add a veteran of Josh Freeman’s caliber… I believe he is still a good player that has something to offer our team. I’m dedicated to the development of Carson Wentz, and I see Freeman being a mentor to him while adding depth and security from the unknown as we roll through a LONG GZL season. Let me be clear though, there’s no QB controversy in Minnesota… this is Carson’s team and he is our starter and captain of the team.

Last year Josh Freeman began the season as the Eagles starter… but after a horrendous start in the first two games (0 TD’s & 10 INT’s) Freeman was benched in favor of Ricky Stanzi. It’s unclear where it all went wrong for Freeman seeing as Stanzi didn’t experience the same struggles while leading the Eagles offense (nearly 4000 yards, completing 54% of his passes and throwing 19 TD compared to 14 INT’s). Whispers around the water cooler indicated Freeman was dealing with some issues in his personal life… but nothing specific ever surfaced in that regard.

Though the GM and Head Coach are sending a consistent message of who is leading the Minnesota Vikings offense this season… it’s hard to not reflect on last year’s mid-season change from Wentz to Newton.
Forum Discussion (by D_Breckheimer on 09/22/2017) Replies - 3 :: Views - 21
Cam Newton is getting the nod...
There's no QB controversy in Minnesota... the job is Cam Newton's!



With 4 games remaining in the season QB Carson Wentz will be sent to the bench… his poor play and eroding confidence the reasoning for the shift in signal callers. In his place, Cam Newton will close out the final 4 games and hopefully send the team into the offseason on a positive trend.

The Vikings can thank Cam Newton for 3 of their 4 victories… those wins came when Newton started. With how well Newton has played this year some have questioned the decision of Carson Wentz ever getting the opportunity to be declared the starter… Cam has a QB rating of 89.4 and has thrown 9 TD’s compared to just 1 INT.

The Vikings have no plans on tanking the final 4 games of the season… instead, they’d LOVE to play spoiler to the Chicago Bears week 15 (sitting at 7-5 and playing for their playoff lives).
Forum Discussion (by D_Breckheimer on 06/07/2017) Replies - 0 :: Views - 17
The Vikings are ready to set SAIL {part II}!
Deal #6: The Vikings were THRILLED to land RG Zach Martin (9th overall selection 4 seasons ago). Negotiations went back -n- forth for some time, but eventually both side came to an agreement that left all parties satisfied… the Vikings sent 1.20, 2.20 and 4.20 for RG Zach Martin and pick 7.02. ~ Rumors have already began spreading about a contract extension being offered to Martin.

Deal #7: Some believe the HEART of a team’s defense resides with the MLB… granted, that can be debated at lengths. Regardless, the Vikings found themselves THIN at MLB and desperately needed to address it (and preferred not to rely on the draft). After spending the better part of a day exchanging no less than a dozen messages back -n- forth… Mr. Nissen agreed to the terms offered and closed the trade with a simple statement of “I really hate you sometimes”. The Vikings get MLB Jamie Collins and a future 5th round pick for 2.13 and a future 3rd round pick.

Deal #8: This deal was no joke… and it wasn’t April Fool’s Day, the Minnesota Vikings landed FS “Ha Ha” Clinton-Dix! The trade offers some Cap difficulty, and will require GM Darryl Breckheimer to make a quick decision on who must go (leading candidates to get cut… WR Justin Blackmon or DT Shariff Floyd). The Vikings send 2.15 and HB Tevin Coleman (clears the way for Murray to be declared the feature back) for “Ha Ha” and 6.27.

Deal #9: This deal was simple… the Vikings exited a player that was not a part of the vision moving forward. In exchange for the veteran TE Vance McDonald the Vikings get a 3rd round selection and eat the cap hit.

Deal #10: It was becoming more and more obvious that resigning the volatile (yet talented) play-maker WR Sammy Watkins was an issue not simmering. The GM Darryl Breckheimer saw the writing on the wall and began PIMP’in his availability via the trade block. In short time “Breck” had multiple offers… even going as far as accepting an offer from the New England Patriot’s (via PM), but pulled it back before being viewed and accepted a higher offer. The Viking’s send WR Sammy Watkins for WR Michael Foyd, a 1st and a 2nd. No doubt Watkins youth and attributes give him an edge with the deal on the table… but both players were looking at the final season in Minnesota and the new GM welcomes the 1st and 2nd round selections!

Deal #11: The Minnesota Vikings had already determined that CB Lezarious Green was working on a short lived VISA with the team. Instead of allowing Green to view the game from the sideline, it was decided to shop his services via the Trade Block. In short time the San Francisco 49er’s came knocking! The Vikings were able to move CB Lezarious Green for a 3rd round selection.

With the Salary Cap HIT climbing [$12M+], the trading came to a halt and a watchful eye on deals moving forward came into play. The GM made a conscious decision to look at Free Agency and see what could be leveraged to fill out the roster to meet preseason requirements.
Forum Discussion (by D_Breckheimer on 02/20/2017) Replies - 0 :: Views - 20

All Team News Stories

At A Glance

VIKINGS FRONT OFFICE
GM D_Breckheimer
Head Coach Sean McDermott
Offensive Coordinator John Fassel
Defensive Coordinator D.Sharper
Special Teams G.Fassel
Salary $158.7M
Cap Penalty $14.19M
Cap Room $1.11M

INJURY REPORT
PLAYER POS OVR LENGTH
Vikings Brandin Cooks WR 90 1 week
Vikings Ha Ha Clinton-Dix FS 96 1 week

NFC North
RNK TEAM W-L-T PCT DIV
#17 Packers Packers 1-1-0 0.50 1-0
#18 Bears Bears 1-1-0 0.50 0-0
#25 Lions Lions 1-1-0 0.50 0-0
#12 Vikings Vikings 1-1-0 0.50 0-1

VIKINGS SCHEDULE
WK DATE OPPONENT TIME/RESULT
1 Sun vs Packers Packers #17
Lost 23-26
2 Sun at Eagles Eagles #26
Won 21-13
4 Sun vs Falcons Falcons #2 1:00pm
5 Sun at Saints Saints #27 1:00pm
6 Sun vs Lions Lions #25 1:00pm
7 Sun at Packers Packers #17 1:00pm
8 Sun vs Cardinals Cardinals #21 1:00pm
9 Sun vs Buccaneers Buccaneers #8 1:00pm
10 Sun vs Titans Titans #6 1:00pm
11 Sun at Texans Texans #31 1:00pm
12 Thu at Lions Lions #25 12:30pm
13 Sun at Panthers Panthers #5 1:00pm
14 Sun vs Bears Bears #18 1:00pm
15 Sat at Colts Colts #7 8:30pm
16 Sat at Bears Bears #18 1:00pm
17 Sun vs Jaguars Jaguars #16 4:00pm

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