5 things to watch during the Vikings game vs. the Cardinals

(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) Laquon Treadwell
(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) Laquon Treadwell /
2 of 6
(Photo by David Berding/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) Sean Mannion
(Photo by David Berding/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) Sean Mannion /

The backup quarterback battle

One of the most hotly contested debates of the preseason has been the battle for the backup quarterback position between Kyle Sloter and Sean Mannion.

According to the eye test, Sloter has outplayed Mannion this preseason and he has brought a more exciting brand of play to the field, which has gained the support of almost every member of the Vikings’ fan base.

Unfortunately for them, the fan base doesn’t get to make the decision on who the starting quarterback is. That responsibility belongs to head coach Mike Zimmer, who continues to zero in on Sloter’s practice habits as opposed to his on-field performance. That has led Zimmer to declare Mannion to have the upper hand in this battle, which has Minnesota fans ready to explode.

While the backup quarterback position may not matter in the grand scheme of things, it will still be interesting to see how the Vikings handle this against the Cardinals once starter Kirk Cousins is placed in bubble wrap for the regular-season opener.

The strangest thing about this competition is that Sloter hasn’t even received an opportunity to showcase himself against second-string competition as Mannion has taken all of the snaps right after Cousins this preseason.

If the Vikings want a true evaluation, they may throw Sloter in for a series or two to see how he fares, which could put this argument to rest.