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.


With lockout on hold, Vikings to discuss plan

Posted by: under Vikings, Lions, NFC, Vikings players, Ben Leber Updated: April 25, 2011 - 11:49 PM

Tuesday promises to be an interesting day in the NFL.

With the lockout on hold, at least temporarily, ESPN's Adam Schefter tweeted the NFL Management Council told teams to let players into their buildings Tuesday but also recommended keeping weight rooms closed. (So why bother showing up?)

Meanwhile, Vikings officials will have a meeting first thing in the morning to review how they will handle things, such as players deciding that they'd like to spend time at WInter Park.

Ben Leber, an assistant player rep for the Vikings, said in a text message to my colleague Chip Scoggins tonight that at least one teammate had asked him if he's allowed to visit Winter Park on Tuesday. Right now, the answer would be yes. Of course, if the decision by U.S. District Judge Susan Nelson is stayed that will mean that those players will be asked to leave in short order.

"It's my understanding that we are able to workout at Winter Park tomorrow and players should feel free to do so," said Leber, whose understanding is that he's not allowed at the facility regardless of what happens because he doesn't have a contract for 2011.

It's going to be very interesting to see how teams handle this situation. Pro Football Talk reported that teams are telling coaches not to talk to its players as long as the current uncertainty remains.

There also are some differences in what players are telling their teammates. While Leber said Vikings players should feel free to go to work, the same stance taken by the Steelers' Ryan Clark, Lions player rep Kyle Vanden Bosch told his teammates not to show up at the team's practice facility yet, according to the Detroit Free Press.

In an e-mail, NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said: "If a player comes to the facility, he will be treated courteously and with respect." 

As for what agents are telling their clients, local agent Blake Baratz said he is not advising his guys to rush to the team facilities on Tuesday.

"My message is just for the guys to hold tight," said Baratz, who represents Green Bay tight end Jermichael Finley and linebacker Desmond Bishop and Detroit defensive tackle Corey Williams. "My guys are all working out, on a strict regimen and working their tails off where they are. A lot of them are not in their NFL city, so I'm not going to have them rush to get into the facility.

"Whenever the league comes back they are going to figure something out. If I had to look into the future, there are going to be discussions about what to do with workout bonuses and offseason workouts. I think it's a bit knee jerk to tell guys to show up at the facility [Tuesday]."

 

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