MANKATO — While he won’t be available to the Vikings for the first four weeks of the season, wide receiver Michael Floyd is doing plenty in training camp to ensure he’ll have a sizable role in the offense when he returns from his suspension.
Floyd, who was given a four-game ban from the NFL last month in the wake of his December DUI arrest, has put together a strong camp for the Vikings as he works to ensure his place on the roster. He’s gotten plenty of work in the Vikings’ top three-receiver package with Laquon Treadwell missing time this week, and he made several impressive sideline catches after separating from defensive backs in 1-on-1 drills on Friday.
“[He’s looked] pretty dang good,” coach Mike Zimmer said. “He’s made probably the most contested of anybody in the camp. He’s a big, physical body, which helps in the run game, and I think he’s done a nice job in the routes. Some of the routes, he’s a little faster than he looks.”
Floyd’s one-year, $1.41 million deal with the Vikings includes no guaranteed money, so there’s technically no financial mechanism to help ensure he eventually lands a roster spot. In fact, the Vikings could keep an extra young receiver — possibly rookie Rodney Adams or Stacy Coley — on the roster for the first four weeks of the season while Floyd is unavailable, before making a decision on how they’ll handle their wide receiver group.
But the Vikings seemed intrigued by Floyd as a downfield option when they signed him, and he’s stood out on intermediate routes so far in training camp. It seems he could be playing his way into the team’s plans, and he figures to get plenty of chances to showcase himself in the preseason before his suspension starts headed into Week 1.