Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Vikings 4 Downs: Barr, McKinnon, Munnerlyn, Hattiesburg

Posted by: Master Tesfatsion Updated: June 10, 2014 - 9:17 AM

Every Monday morning during the offseason we’ll take four questions from Twitter for our weekly mailbag using the #VikingsST hashtag. A day behind this week but, nevertheless, here it is.

Tough to tell say because we haven’t seen Barr since rookie minicamp, but I don’t think he’ll be strictly limited as a situational pass rusher. Perhaps it’s how his role begins as he continues to develop and improve in coverage. There was noticeable improvement in that area from his junior to season year in that area and enough to be optimistic that Barr could develop into a good all-around linebacker over time despite the lack of experience

But there’s no question his biggest strength after playing linebacker for two seasons at UCLA is rushing the passer. We’ll have a better understanding of how the Vikings plan to use him next week during minicamp, but Barr can rush off the edge at linebacker or stick his hand in the dirt at end if necessary at 6-5 and 255 pounds.

Running back Jerick McKinnon is the only unsigned rookie for the Vikings, who quickly struck deals with their other nine draft picks. The holdup likely is due to money. Panthers guard Trai Turner received four years for $2.79 million with the 92nd overall pick, while Ravens tight end Crockett Gilmore, the 99th overall pick, got a four-year deal worth $2.90 million.

McKinnon, the 96th overall pick, is one of five players unsigned in between Turner and Gilmore. The draft slots were thrown off a bit by Gilmore’s contract, but McKinnon isn’t missing any reps. McKinnon has been at all the OTA sessions so far.

Yes, and it will probably be Captain Munnerlyn. The other option, Josh Robinson, has missed OTAs as a precaution according to Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer. Not to say that dismissed Robinson but the plan since the Vikings signed Munnerlyn was to play the same role as Antoine Winfield. Munnerlyn will likely start as the outside corner and shift to the slot in nickel situations with either Robinson, or another cornerback, on the outside.

There's been some pretty good battles between Munnerlyn and wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson during OTAs so far. Munnerlyn also said last week that he's trying to be a mentor to some of the younger corners, like Rhodes. 

That’s why the Star Tribune chopper gas tank is full at all times. *Blows horn* News team, assemble

(We don’t actually have a chopper. I think.)

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Boston - LP: R. De La Rosa 0 FINAL
Toronto - WP: M. Stroman 8
San Francisco - LP: T. Hudson 1 FINAL
Philadelphia - WP: C. Hamels 2
Texas - LP: C. Lewis 2 FINAL
NY Yankees - WP: B. McCarthy 4
Houston - LP: S. Feldman 1 FINAL
Oakland - WP: J. Samardzija 13
Miami - WP: H. Alvarez 3 FINAL
Atlanta - LP: C. Kimbrel 2
San Diego - WP: T. Ross 13 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - LP: E. Jackson 3
NY Mets - LP: D. Gee 1 FINAL
Milwaukee - WP: M. Garza 9
Chicago WSox - WP: H. Noesi 5 FINAL
Minnesota - LP: P. Hughes 2
Cleveland 1 Bottom 14th Inning
Kansas City 1
Detroit 5 Top 7th Inning
LA Angels 3
Baltimore 4 Bottom 8th Inning
Seattle 0
Montreal 1 FINAL
Real Salt Lake 3
Calgary 26 FINAL
Edmonton 22
Winnipeg 7/25/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Ottawa 7/26/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Toronto 7/26/14 9:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Winnipeg 7/31/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Toronto 8/1/14 6:00 PM
Montreal
Brt Columbia 8/1/14 9:00 PM
Calgary
Saskatchewan 8/2/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
New York 84 FINAL
Seattle 80
Phoenix 87 4th Qtr 3:23
Los Angeles 70
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pm
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pm
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pm
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pm
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis Noon
Sep 14 - vs. New England Noon
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

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