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Letter from McCollum asks Wilfs to condemn Redskins name

  • Article by: Master Tesfatsion and Matt Vensel
  • Star Tribune staff writers
  • June 20, 2014 - 1:10 AM

 

A Minnesota congresswoman urged Vikings owner Zygi Wilf to condemn the Redskins nickname Thursday.

U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum asked in a letter for Wilf to break his silence two days after the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ruled to cancel the Redskins’ trademarks.

“Mr. Wilf, I believe you are a man of integrity,” said McCollum, a Democrat from St. Paul. “Therefore I am calling upon you to publicly demonstrate leadership on behalf of your organization and the people of Minnesota by adding your voice to the millions of Americans who are calling for this racist mascot to be changed and for Native Americans to be treated with respect and dignity by the NFL.

“A strong condemnation of the Washington’s franchise name by the Minnesota Vikings Football Club will go a long way toward helping to change the mascot.”

Vikings Vice President Lester Bagley said the team had received the letter and called the matter an important one.

“We have a large Native American population in Minnesota, and we’re sensitive to their concerns,” Bagley said, adding that team executives have been in an “ongoing dialogue” with the Native American community. “We’ve been active on this issue,” he said.

He didn’t say that Wilf would meet McCollum’s demand.

Flowers not visiting

Free-agent cornerback Brandon Flowers will not visit the Vikings, according to a league source, after the team expressed interest in the former Pro Bowl player.

The 28-year-old Flowers, released by the Chiefs last week, met with the Chargers on Thursday and reportedly received interested from the Ravens, Steelers and Falcons.

The Vikings signed Captain Munnerlyn to pair with Xavier Rhodes and serve as the slot corner in the nickel. Josh Robinson was a full participant during the team’s three-day minicamp and used as the outside corner in the nickel.

Not old yet

Running back Adrian Peterson won’t turn 30 until next offseason, but he is already scoffing at the possibility that he will regress at that age like most running backs.

The 2012 NFL MVP compared the situation Thursday to the questions he received after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in 2011.

“It doesn’t apply to me,” Peterson said. “I have a totally different mind-set and mind frame, so I’ll just stay in my lane and let everybody else say what they have to say.”

When asked what would be his age equivalent, Peterson responded: “Well I was talking to [Brett] Favre. Forty sounds a good number.”

As for the 29-year-old version of Peterson, Zimmer has been impressed with his ability to cut and, surprisingly, his hands.

“The way he catches the ball is very good,” Zimmer said. “I didn’t know what kind of receiver he was. … Some of the cuts he made were, wow, like some of the great backs you’ve been around.”

Peterson received more opportunities to show off his hands this week, and Zimmer said he saw Peterson drop the ball once this offseason.

“I’m very comfortable; you ask me two weeks [ago] and [I] wouldn’t have replied the same way,” Peterson said of the offense. “But going into the offseason I’m comfortable where I’m at.”

 

Staff writer Corey Mitchell contributed to this report.

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