Officials give Vikings a primer on rule changes

  • Article by: MATT VENSEL , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 1, 2014 - 12:52 AM

– There will surely be moments when Vikings coach Mike Zimmer isn’t as friendly with NFL officials, but this week he is graciously hosting a group of them in Mankato.

A five-team crew of NFL and NCAA officials led by veteran NFL referee Carl Cheffers is here at training camp to educate Vikings players and coaches on this year’s rule changes and new points of emphasis for officials, which include an heightened focus on pass interference, defensive holding and illegal contact between defensive backs and wide receivers.

“It’s good to get them in and the good thing about us, I think all coaches, we adjust to the rules and try to play within the rules and try to do things the right way and try to keep the integrity of the game right,” Zimmer said. “We just coach different and we have to do what we have to do to avoid penalties and still be able to play a tough, physical brand of football.”

Thursday night, Cheffers’ crew met with Vikings players and showed them a video from the league explaining the rule changes and how other existing rules will be applied differently on the field going forward. The officials were on the field beforehand to give players hands-on individual instruction where it was needed. They will be in camp through Saturday.

Zimmer said the instruction will be good for his players, specifically the defensive backs, who will be scrutinized by officials. But he says the new points of emphasis won’t affect the way he coaches.

“I don’t really have to change anything because I teach within the rules all the way anyway,” he said.

Among the new rules the officials will discuss with the Vikings is the one regarding the use of trash talk and racist or anti-gay slurs on the field, which will now result in an unsportsmanlike penalty.

Praise for Patterson

Count Greg Jennings among the many who believe a breakout season is in store for fellow wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson, who had 45 catches for 469 yards and four touchdowns as a rookie.

“There is no ceiling to his potential. There really isn’t,” Jennings said. “If he’s willing to put in the time, the potential is there, the athletic [ability]. He has everything that he needs.”

Jennings said that for Patterson to take a leap forward in his second season, the speedster needs to keep improving his route running and develop a better understanding of coverages and what defenses are trying to do to stop him.

“Once you get to the comfort level to where you line up, see what the defense is doing and you react, that’s when you’re playing you’re freest,” Jennings said.

Blanton still sidelined

Safety Robert Blanton, who injured his hamstring during Monday’s practice, remains sidelined, and Zimmer said the Vikings don’t know how long he will be out. In his absence, the Vikings gave the majority of the first-team reps to Jamarca Sanford and Antone Exum.

Cornerbacks Captain Munnerlyn and Josh Robinson, who have also had hamstring issues, both practiced. Munnerlyn participated in team drills after being limited to just individual work Wednesday.

Rookie tight end A.C. Leonard, who left Wednesday’s practice because of a headache, did not practice.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Houston 1 FINAL
Miami 1
Philadelphia 1 FINAL
Minnesota 7
St. Louis 3 FINAL
Detroit 4
Baltimore - WP: T. Wilson 10 FINAL
NY Yankees - LP: S. Baker 2
Boston 9 FINAL
Tampa Bay 6
Toronto 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh 8
Atlanta 5 FINAL
Toronto 3
Washington 2 FINAL
NY Mets 10
Chicago Cubs 5 FINAL
Cincinnati 9
San Diego 3 FINAL
Texas 2
San Francisco 9 FINAL
Seattle 8
Colorado 4 FINAL
Chicago Cubs 18
Cleveland 3 FINAL
Milwaukee 2
Oakland 10 FINAL
Chicago WSox 4
Los Angeles 5 FINAL
LA Angels 4
Kansas City 10 FINAL
Arizona 5
Atlanta 100 FINAL
Charlotte 115
New York 80 FINAL
Chicago 111
Golden State 108 FINAL
Milwaukee 95
Oklahoma City 89 FINAL
Utah 94
Denver 114 FINAL
Portland 120
Nashville 4 FINAL
Washington 3
Arizona 2 FINAL
Pittsburgh 3
San Jose 3 FINAL(SO)
Philadelphia 2
Anaheim 3 FINAL
NY Islanders 2
NY Rangers 2 FINAL
Boston 4
Tampa Bay 0 FINAL
Detroit 4
New Jersey 1 FINAL
Carolina 3
Florida 2 FINAL(OT)
Montreal 3
Ottawa 3 FINAL(OT)
Toronto 4
Los Angeles 1 FINAL
Minnesota 4
Columbus 4 FINAL
St. Louis 2
Buffalo 3 FINAL
Colorado 5
Dallas 4 FINAL(OT)
Vancouver 3
Arizona 78 FINAL
Wisconsin 85
Canisius 73 FINAL
NJIT 78
Notre Dame 66 FINAL
Kentucky 68
San Jose 1 FINAL
New England 2
Orlando City 2 FINAL
Montreal 2
Los Angeles 0 FINAL
D.C. 1
Sporting Kansas City 1 FINAL
New York City 0
Red Bull New York 2 FINAL
Columbus 1
Portland 1 FINAL
Vancouver FC 2
Colorado 0 FINAL
Houston 0
Seattle 0 FINAL
FC Dallas 0
Texas 54 FINAL
(1) Connecticut 105
Dayton 82 FINAL
(8) Louisville 66
(16) Duke 55 FINAL
(4) Maryland 65
Gonzaga 69 FINAL
(6) Tennessee 73
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: What should the Vikings do with Adrian Peterson?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close