Rotating On the Defensive Line is Fine With Corey Wootton


Sep 22, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) fumbles the ball as he runs from Chicago Bears defensive end Corey Wootton (98) during the second half at Heinz Field. The Bears won the game, 40-23. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

You won’t hear any complaints from recently-signed Vikings defensive lineman Corey Wootton about Mike Zimmer’s plans to rotate his d-line.

Rotation is just fine with Corey Wootton.

“I like it…it keeps everyone fresh,” Wootton told KFAN during a Thursday morning interview.

The former Bear Wootton is one of the more versatile of the Vikings’ cornucopia of defensive linemen, giving the team depth at both defensive tackle and defensive end.

That versatility guarantees that, even with a rotational approach, Wootton will get his fair share of snaps.

Wootton’s appreciation for the need to rotate is a sharp contrast to the attitude evinced by certain of the Vikings’ veterans in recent years.

Jared Allen and to a lesser extent Kevin Williams both balked at the notion of being used on a rotational basis, bullying coach Leslie Frazier into giving them the bulk of the snaps and probably hastening their decline as players in doing so.

Jared’s unwillingness to share time with Everson Griffen may have held back Griffen’s development as a pass rusher as well, though Griffen ended up getting paid either way.

Thankfully, Mike Zimmer won’t have to worry about any push-back from Jared and K-Will because they’re gone.

In Wootton, Zimmer has found someone who at least for now is buying into his program. It helps having players who buy in rather than selfishly fight for more time on the field.

Taking a few snaps off now and then may hurt your stats, but it may ultimately help the team.

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