Lighter Floyd hopes to make heavier impact with Vikings

  • Article by: MATT VENSEL , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 30, 2014 - 11:22 PM

The defensive tackle has shed weight in hopes of gaining a starting job.

– Not long after Mike Zimmer was hired by the Vikings and put his coaching staff in place, Sharrif Floyd got a phone call from Andre Patterson. His new position coach cut right to the chase.

“How much did you weigh at Florida your last year?” Patterson asked the second-year defensive tackle.

The veteran defensive line coach had been digging through Floyd’s college game tape to see what he would be getting in the 2013 first-round draft pick. What he saw was a disruptive lineman who recorded 46 tackles and three sacks as a junior while leading the Gators with 13 tackles for a loss.

Two hundred ninety-five pounds, Floyd replied.

“Well, I want that guy,” Patterson said.

A few months and countless Caesar salads later, Floyd arrived at Minnesota State Mankato feeling like his old self. This will be a big training camp for Floyd, who played behind veteran Kevin Williams during his rookie season. Now, the Vikings are counting on him to live up to his promise as a former first-round pick and step into a starting role, and they feel with a slimmer waistline and a year of NFL experience under his belt, Floyd isn’t going to let them down.

“We’re counting on him to be a really good football player for us. Big time,” Patterson said. “If Sharrif can be physical, quick and explosive, if he can bring those things to the table for us every single day, it’s going to give our defense a chance to be successful.”

After Floyd, who some analysts thought could be drafted as high as third overall in 2013, fell into the Vikings’ lap, he played only 39.3 percent of the defensive plays due to the presence of Williams, a perennial Pro Bowler as their three-technique tackle. Floyd made minimal impact with 19 tackles and 2.5 sacks in 16 games.

“What did you expect? He had a future Hall-of-Famer in front of him,” said Patterson, who is in his second stint as the team’s defensive line coach. “Sharrif was not going to get a whole lot of reps because of the guy who was playing in front of him. To me, you can’t count that against him.”

Self-control diet

With Williams gone, having signed with the Seahawks after some late flirtations with the Vikings, a path to a starting spot has been cleared for Floyd. He feels more comfortable after “learning the ropes” from Williams during his rookie season, and while he would prefer to play at his college weight of 295 pounds, he was relieved to hear that the new coaching staff wanted him to be leaner.

Former coach Leslie Frazier’s staff asked Floyd to bulk up as soon as he arrived as a rookie. Floyd obliged and reported to camp at 315 pounds. During the season, he weighed closer to 320 at times.

“They wanted more beef on me,” he said, shrugging. “I never played at that weight until last year.”

This summer, Floyd arrived in Mankato at 303 pounds and feels significantly less sluggish.

It is a delicate balance for a defensive lineman, shedding weight to gain quickness, explosiveness and stamina without sacrificing strength. But both Floyd and the coaching staff believe he hasn’t lost so much weight that he will get pushed around at the point of attack.

So how did Floyd lose the weight? “Just self-control,” he said. His go-to meal was a grilled chicken Caesar salad. Sure, Caesar dressing isn’t the healthiest thing to consume, he acknowledges, “but it’s better than bacon.” The hardest thing to cut out of his diet? Chips.

“I can’t lie. I like chips,” Floyd said. “I like Tostitos scoops, but I get the whole-grain wheat.”

Learning curve

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Atlanta 6 FINAL
Detroit 4
Philadelphia 3 FINAL
Houston 6
St. Louis 4 FINAL
Miami 1
Baltimore 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
NY Yankees 2 FINAL
Pittsburgh 1
Chicago Cubs 6 FINAL
San Francisco 8
Los Angeles 6 FINAL
Chicago WSox 1
San Diego 4 FINAL
Seattle 9
Cleveland 9 FINAL
Cincinnati 3
Milwaukee 2 FINAL
LA Angels 3
Oakland 2 FINAL
Chicago Cubs 2
Texas 4 FINAL
Kansas City 5
Colorado 3 FINAL
Arizona 4
NY Mets 4 Bottom 7th Inning
Washington 3
Boston 4 Top 3rd Inning
Minnesota 4
Toronto 0 Top 3rd Inning
Baltimore 0
Oklahoma City 7:00 PM
Chicago
Dallas 9:30 PM
Portland
Calgary 1 2nd Prd 17:30
Boston 1
St. Louis 1 2nd Prd 17:48
Philadelphia 0
Minnesota 0 2nd Prd
Washington 1
Toronto 0 1st Prd 6:31
Tampa Bay 1
Dallas 2 1st Prd 6:51
Florida 0
NY Islanders 7:00 PM
Nashville
Vancouver 8:00 PM
Arizona
Montreal 9:30 PM
Los Angeles
Morgan State 76 FINAL
MD-Eastern Shore 89
Niagara 54 FINAL
Siena 71
Holy Cross 27 2nd Half
Bucknell 36
Western Ky 41 2nd Half 18:03
Charlotte 35
Navy 22 2nd Half
Colgate 27
Temple 36 1st Half 1:29
East Carolina 33
UAB 33 2nd Half 17:24
Fla Atlantic 34
Boston Univ 34 2nd Half
Lafayette 40
American Univ 23 2nd Half
Lehigh 27
Wisconsin 48 2nd Half 16:27
Minnesota 40
Fairfield 7 2nd Half
Saint Peters 22
Arkansas 49 2nd Half
South Carolina 38
Morehead State 43 2nd Half 18:07
UT Martin 31
USC Upstate 27 2nd Half
Fla Gulf Coast 25
Lipscomb 24 2nd Half
North Florida 37
Southern Ill 25 2nd Half
Missouri State 19
Texas State 17 1st Half 7:13
Appalachian St 19
SC State 6:30 PM
Bethune-Cookman
Delaware State 6 1st Half 13:29
Coppin State 13
Middle Tennessee 14 1st Half 3:58
FIU 15
Texas-Arlington 30 1st Half 6:58
Ga Southern 22
Norfolk State 6:30 PM
Hampton
NC A&T 6:30 PM
NC Central
Savannah State 7:00 PM
Florida A&M
Southern Miss 7:00 PM
Louisiana Tech
Georgia State 7:00 PM
ULM
Marshall 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
Rice 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Ark-Little Rock 7:15 PM
Louisiana
South Alabama 7:30 PM
Arkansas State
Alabama State 7:30 PM
Grambling St
Alabama A&M 7:30 PM
Jackson State
Sam Houston St 7:30 PM
Lamar
Central Arkansas 7:30 PM
Nicholls
Portland State 7:30 PM
Northern Ariz
Southern U 7:30 PM
Prairie View
Alcorn State 7:30 PM
Texas Southern
Houston Baptist 7:30 PM
TX A&M-CC
SE Louisiana 7:45 PM
New Orleans
California 8:00 PM
Arizona
Eastern Ill 8:00 PM
Belmont
Memphis 8:00 PM
Connecticut
VA Commonwealth 8:00 PM
Davidson
Ark-Pine Bluff 0 Postponed
Miss Valley St 0
Marist 8:00 PM
Quinnipiac
Sacramento St 8:00 PM
Southern Utah
Northwestern St 8:00 PM
Stephen F Austin
North Texas 8:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Colorado 8:00 PM
Washington
Idaho 8:00 PM
Weber State
Abilene Christian 8:00 PM
Incarnate Word
Eastern Wash 8:05 PM
Idaho State
Bradley 8:35 PM
Drake
Cal State Fullerton 9:00 PM
UC Irvine
CS-Northridge 9:00 PM
Long Beach State
UC Riverside 9:00 PM
UC Davis
Stanford 10:00 PM
Arizona State
Utah 10:00 PM
Washington St
Monmouth 68 FINAL
Canisius 56
Wake Forest 85 FINAL
(22) Syracuse 79
Saint Louis 65 FINAL
VA Commonwealth 58
Saint Peters 62 FINAL
Rider 54
UNC-Asheville 51 FINAL
Liberty 59
UNC Greensboro 44 FINAL
(17) Chattanooga 78
Michigan State 69 FINAL
Michigan 49
Arkansas 72 FINAL
Ole Miss 61
Manhattan 51 FINAL
Niagara 57
Massachusetts 63 FINAL
Richmond 67
Virginia 52 FINAL
Miami-Florida 62
Jacksonville St 45 FINAL
Belmont 55
Morgan State 65 FINAL
MD-Eastern Shore 50
Campbell 65 FINAL
Winthrop 52
Furman 65 FINAL
Samford 54
Oregon 64 FINAL
Washington St 66
Indiana 52 FINAL
(23) Rutgers 63
Pepperdine 67 FINAL
Loyola Marymount 68
Auburn 47 FINAL
(18) Texas A&M 57
Morehead St 66 FINAL
Tennessee St 81
George Mason 43 FINAL
Saint Josephs 71
Western Carolina 53 FINAL
East Tenn St 73
Arizona 62 FINAL
UCLA 80
Texas State 55 FINAL
Appalachian St 61
TX-Arlington 66 FINAL
Georgia Southern 41
SC State 57 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 56
Delaware State 51 FINAL
Coppin State 80
Portland 58 FINAL
Santa Clara 66
Norfolk State 49 FINAL
Hampton 64
Florida Atlantic 56 FINAL
UAB 59
NC A&T 67 FINAL
NC Central 46
Savannah State 72 FINAL
Florida A&M 51
Virginia Tech 51 FINAL
Pittsburgh 45
Central Arkansas 43 FINAL
Nicholls 53
Houston Baptist 48 FINAL
TX A&M-CC 73
Gardner-Webb 70 FINAL
Radford 56
Old Dominion 67 FINAL
Marshall 55
Georgia 60 2nd Half 2:52
Missouri 54
Ark-Little Rock 60 2nd Half 4:10
Louisiana 54
South Alabama 60 FINAL
Arkansas State 70
Georgia State 66 FINAL
ULM 61
Sam Houston St 49 2nd Half 7:32
Lamar 67
SE Louisiana 58 2nd Half 7:28
New Orleans 66
Northwestern St 32 2nd Half 12:22
Stephen F Austin 30
Alabama A&M 39 2nd Half 10:00
Jackson State 48
Alabama State 43 2nd Half 10:00
Grambling 36
Southern U 57 2nd Half 11:45
Prairie View 31
Alcorn State 41 2nd Half 8:30
Texas Southern 54
Ark-Pine Bluff 0 Postponed
Miss Valley St 0
Wofford 50 2nd Half 3:46
Mercer 70
Abilene Christian 34 2nd Half
Incarnate Word 26
La Salle 29 2nd Half
Rhode Island 23
Illinois 29 2nd Half
Nebraska 49
TX-San Antonio 28 2nd Half
Rice 26
Valparaiso 27 2nd Half 17:36
Oakland 30
Missouri State 26 2nd Half
Indiana State 23
Georgia Tech 7:00 PM
(15) North Carolina
Presbyterian 7:00 PM
High Point
Charlotte 7:00 PM
Western Ky
Texas-El Paso 7:00 PM
North Texas
Wichita State 7:00 PM
Evansville
Loyola-Chicago 7:00 PM
Northern Iowa
Bradley 7:05 PM
Drake
Vanderbilt 7:30 PM
(12) Kentucky
Colorado 8:00 PM
USC
San Francisco 8:00 PM
Pacific
FIU 8:00 PM
Middle Tennessee
Idaho State 8:00 PM
Eastern Washington
Weber State 8:00 PM
Idaho
Purdue 8:25 PM
Minnesota
Cal-Irvine 9:00 PM
Cal State Fullerton
Long Beach St 9:00 PM
CS-Northridge
Hawaii 9:00 PM
UC Santa Barbara
UC Davis 9:00 PM
UC-Riverside
Northern Ariz 9:00 PM
Portland State
Southern Utah 9:00 PM
Sacramento St
Utah 10:30 PM
Washington
BYU 10:30 PM
St Marys-CA

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who is doing the best job coaching a Minnesota pro sports team?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close