The Minnesota Vikings held their first day of mandatory minicamp on Tuesday as the team inches closer to the 2018 regular season.
Over the past few weeks, the Minnesota Vikings have conducted a bunch of OTA practices at the new TCO Performance Center. Despite these practices being voluntary, the majority of the Vikings’ 2018 roster has been in attendance for each session.
This week, Minnesota is holding their mandatory minicamp at the team’s new facility. The minicamp began on Tuesday and will end on Thursday.
After Tuesday’s practice, Vikings players and head coach Mike Zimmer met with the local media and provided some updates on the team’s progress up to this point in the offseason.
Latavius Murray looking good
At this time last year, Murray was still recovering from ankle surgery. But on Tuesday, the Minnesota running back was a full participant in the team’s minicamp.
Zimmer said Murray looked, “really good,” and has had, “a great spring,” this year. The running back also said on Tuesday that being healthy in 2018 has made a big difference in his improvements on the field this offseason.
Adam Thielen not worrying about the outside hype
After a 2017 season that resulted in him earning a trip to the Pro Bowl and a Second-Team All-Pro selection, Thielen is doing his best this offseason to ignore everyone’s excitement and just focus on finding ways to get even better for 2018.
The Vikings receiver said on Tuesday that he still has, “so many things he needs to work on,” this year and he worries more about what his coaches and teammates think about him than what the people outside of the organization say.
Sheldon Richardson not about to brag at this point
With the addition of Richardson this offseason, Minnesota’s defensive line is looked at by many as one of the NFL’s best heading into the 2018 season. However, the Vikings new defensive tackle said after Tuesday’s minicamp practice that the line still has to, “go earn that (title),” first before any of the current praise can actually become valid.
Minnesota doing some experimenting on defense
The offseason is the time to try out new ideas and see if they could actually be of use in an actual game. On Tuesday, the Vikings experimented with a couple different looks on the defensive side of the ball.
KFAN Radio’s Aj Mansour reported that Minnesota linebacker Anthony Barr participated in some of the defensive line drills and that the team lined Terence Newman up as a safety for a few plays during practice.
It’s a good sign that the Vikings are trying to improve Barr’s pass-rushing abilities, as it was one aspect of his game that made him so dangerous during the early part of his career.
Newman playing safety likely has to do with Andrew Sendejo sitting out of practice with an calf injury. But considering how deep Minnesota is at corner this year, Newman may see the field more in 2018 if he decides to pick up the role of being the team’s backup safety.