Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Vikings OTA's

What to look for during OTA's.

#1 Linebacker position: We know Chad Greenway is a lock at the Strong Side Linebacker spot. In the Middle we will need to keep our eyes on a few guys who could make an impact at this position. I think it's Erin Henderson's spot to lose, but keep an eye on guys like Audie Cole, Michael Mauti and Tyrone McKenzie. Audie Cole had a great pre-season last year and has the ability to make game changing plays, but lacks size and experience. Michael Mauti is built like a true Middle Linebacker, but is a rookie and has injury concerns. Tyrone McKenzie has been in the NFL since 2009 and still hasn't made an impact, so why is it going to happen in 2013? On the Weak Side spot look for Gerald Hodges our fourth round pick in 2013 NFL Draft to play that role. Also, look for Audie Cole or maybe even Larry Dean to compete.

#2 Wide Receiver position: Greg Jennings is our #1 WR, who is #2, #3, #4, etc? Look for Jerome Simpson and Cordarrelle Patterson compete for the #2 spot opposite Jennings. I hope Patterson wins this battle! At slot look for Jarius Wright to snab this role. Who will battle for depth? Simpson? Joe Webb? Greg Childs? Stephen Burton? Chris Summers? Rodney Smith? I think we will see some competition, it may not be elite competition, but it's competition. Two names stick out as possible cuts in Joe Webb and Jerome Simpson because of contracts. They both will be given a chance, but both will have a target on them this offseason.

#3 Cornerback position: We could see a lot of shuffling this offseason. Do we have a #1 or #2 corner? I hope Xavier Rhodes is the real deal and can be our #1 guy, but that is a lot to ask of from a rookie. Chris Cook has the size to be a good corner in the NFL, but must prove he has what it takes. Josh Robinson, Jacob Lacey, A.J. Jefferson, Brandon Burton, Bobby Felder and Marcus Sherels will compete for a roster spot. I will definitely keep an eye on these names during OTA's, mini camp and preseason.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Vikings Stadium is great for Minnesota

The Minnesota Vikings unveiled their new Stadium tonight and omg it is stunning. This 65,000 seat NFL Stadium is a "People's Stadium". The new look is unbelievable with all the windows and massive doors that will open for a outdoor feel. This state of the art stadium has everything from impressive technology for the fans experience and the ability to host some of the largest events in the World such as Super Bowls, Final Fours, concerts and much more. This new stadium could be one of the most versatile facilities in the World. I am so excited for the Vikings and the State of Minnesota and what this means for Minneapolis. This stadium will create development opportunities for businesses and restaurants. Minneapolis and the Minnesota Vikings have an amazing future and I am proud to be apart of this fan base. 

Here are a few images!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

NFC North Draft Recap- Green Bay Packers, Detroit Lions and Chicago Bears

I've already graded the Vikings draft as an "A-" in my latest blog titled Overview of Vikings Draft. So what about the rest of the NFC North teams? Who else came out as "Winners" with the Vikings?

Green Bay Packers
Let's start with our hated rivals the Green Bay Packers. The Packers organization made a bunch of trades during the draft and were willing to grab a ton of draft picks by doing so. Ted Thompson and the Green Bay Packers get a solid "B" in this years draft.

The Packers in the first round took a player Datone Jones DT from UCLA who some had as the biggest sleeper and others had in round 2 and a reach as a first round pick. Drafting Datone could be exactly what the Packers need to bolster their 3-4 defense. He is quick and will put pressure on whoever has the ball. His downside is that he still raw and veteran offensive lineman will make him look silly.

In the second round the Packers got a guy they were willing to take in round 1 and fell to them in round 2, RB Eddie Lacy from Alabama. Lacy could be another elite runner in this league as he can punish defenders with his big body and quick moves. His major concern is the toe injury reportedly turf toe, but others think it could be more serious then just an ordinary turf toe. Don't expect Eddie to get 20 carries a game and be another Adrian Peterson, but if he is half as good as AP he could really boost the Packers offense.

Other Picks
4th rd- OT David Bakhtiari, Colorado
4th rd- OT J.C. Tretter, Cornell
4th rd- RB Johnathan Franklin, UCLA
5th rd- FS Micah Hyde, Iowa
5th rd- DT Josh Boyd, Mississippi State
6th rd- LB Nate Palmer, Illinois State
7th rd- WR Charles Johnson, Grand Valley State
7th rd- WR Kevin Dorsey, Maryland
7th rd- OLB Sam Barrington, South Florida

Detroit Lions
The up and coming Lions need to keep getting younger and add talent on both sides of the ball. The Detroit Lions and General Manager Martin Mayhew get a "C" in this years draft. I believe the Lions needed to add a top tier Left Tackle because Jeff Backus a 12 year career retired and also a top 10 Wide Receiver who can play opposite Calvin Johnson. They got neither, but they did add some decent young talent in other positions of need.

With the Lions first round and 5th overall pick they took DE from Brigham Young Ezekiel Ansah. Ezekiel is an athletic freak who is a huge playmaker and was a nice pick after the top 3 Tackles were taken, they also needed a pass rusher since Vanden Bosch and Avril are gone. He could be the next Pierre-Paul, this guy has elite speed and could create matchup problems for offensive coordinators. He is still pretty raw and will need to develop in the preseason.

The Lions then took CB Darius Slay out of Mississippi State. Slay is a great pickup for the Lions who lack cornerback depth. He is so good at breaking passes up and will at times make Wide Receivers draw penalties because he will frustrate receivers by being so aggressive trying to make a play on the ball. He lacks size with a smaller frame, but should bulk up and be a true #1 corner.

3rd rd- OG Larry Wargord, Kentucky
4th rd- DE Devin Taylor, South Carolina
5th rd- P Sam Martin, Appalachian State
6th rd- WR Corey Fuller, Virginia Tech
6th rd- RB Theo Riddick, Notre Dame
7th rd- TE Michael Williams, Alabama
7th rd- ILB Brandon Hepburn, Florida A&M

Chicago Bears
The Chicago Bears and General Manager Phil Emery made a lot of noise in the NFL Draft this year and I think the only noise they made were boos. The Chicago fans would probably agree they get a "D-" in this years NFL Draft. They needed to get younger on defense with a new MLB, CB's and also needed to add depth at Wide Receiver and the Offensive Line.

With the first pick the Bears made a risky and stunning pick and selected OL Kyle Long from Oregon. Long is very raw and is a project type player who should of been taken in the second day of the draft. The Chicago Bears must of liked his athletic ability, but they reached on this pick. He lacks experience and needs to learn quickly because he may be the starting Left Guard.

In the second round the Bears drafted Jonathon Bostic LB from Florida. More Boos? Chicago reached again for this selection and should of tried trading up to get Manti Te'o or something better than Bostic like Arthur Brown. He lacks a lot of things such as speed, play recognition, coverage skills and takes bad angles. He has some up side but needs to improve quickly to play at the next level.

4th rd- OLB Khaseem Greene, Rutgers
5th rd- OT Jordan Mills, Louisiana Tech
6th rd- DE Cornelius Washington, Georgia
7th rd- WR Marquees Wilson, Washington State