A day of rain and recess
In blustery weather that felt more suitable for links golf than summer football practice, the Vikings worked for roughly 2½ hours, heading back out for another period of full-team work in the rain after coach Mike Zimmer called players in for a discussion.
More skirmishes lead to ejections
Zimmer said Thursday morning he’d talked to players about fighting in practice, after Antone Exum and Laquon Treadwell traded punches on Monday. “It wasn’t too smart,” Zimmer said. “We had a couple things [Wednesday] that popped up, too.” The coach had some colorful words for his team after Reid Fragel and Jaleel Johnson got into a shoving match during a blitz period. Later, when Fragel and linebacker Noor Davis got into a scuffle, Zimmer kicked both players out of practice.
Wright’s confidence at an ‘all-time high’
Wide receiver Jarius Wright saw his playing time dwindle last season, but with Treadwell out again on Thursday, he continued to see more time in the slot. The 27-year-old, who only caught 11 passes last year, said he’s at an “all-time high” in camp. “I’m not going to say my role ever went away,” Wright said. “But I feel like it’s up to me to make my own stitch. As long as I do very well, I feel like I’ll be somewhere.”
Rookie receiver Rodney Adams could get a chance to be the Vikings’ new kick returner, but he struggled in his work as a punt returner on Thursday, dropping a pair of punts in windy conditions. Adams also had a ball taken away from him over the middle when Jayron Kearse made a diving breakup, though he rebounded to make a nice sliding catch late in practice.
“I’m a Hall of Fame nap-taker.” — Soon-to-be-39-year-old cornerback Terence Newman, on his secrets to playing well and staying in shape into his late 30s.
The Vikings were again without left tackle Riley Reiff, who missed his sixth straight practice with a back injury. Linebacker Kentrell Brothers (left hamstring) continued to sit out. Treadwell also sat out for a second straight day, telling reporters his absence is because of a leg strain, not his fight with Exum.