With no long-term contract in place for Anthony Barr, the linebacker was a notable no-show during the Vikings’ first round of organized team activities last week.
Barr, who will be a free agent after the season, still doesn’t have a deal in place. But his return to organized team activities this week did come after he’d acquired a measure of certainty for himself.
Barr said after the Vikings’ practice Wednesday that he took out an insurance policy to provide some financial cover against injury, and he missed the first week of OTAs while getting the policy in order. He said he hoped to have a long-term deal done before the start of OTAs — where the Vikings can do 11-on-11 work for the first time in the offseason — but without a contract, the policy is the next-best thing.
“I thought it was in my best interest to protect myself, and that’s what I did,” Barr said.
The three-time Pro Bowler said contract talks are continuing between his agent and the Vikings, who gave linebacker Eric Kendricks a five-year, $50 million deal in April. The team also hosted Kendricks’ older brother, former Eagles linebacker Mychal Kendricks, on a free-agent visit Tuesday.
Barr, the ninth overall pick in the 2014 draft, is playing this season on a fifth-year option worth $12.3 million.
Line combos continue
The Vikings worked through another iteration of offensive line pairings Wednesday, moving Mike Remmers to right guard after playing him at right tackle last week.
Rashod Hill, who was not with the first-team offense when practice was open to reporters last Wednesday, moved to right tackle with the top group. Danny Isidora and Tom Compton split time at left guard, while Nick Easton worked at center with Pat Elflein still out because of ankle and shoulder injuries.
Priefer in no rush
Rookie Daniel Carlson and veteran Kai Forbath each hit all four of their attempts during the field-goal period. Both connected on a long attempt of 53 yards, though Forbath later missed left from 47 yards in a hurry-up drill while Carlson drilled his from 46.
If special teams coordinator Mike Priefer has his way, the kickers will battle for the job through summer. Asked if he had a date when he wanted the job settled, he deadpanned, “Yes — before we play San Francisco [to open the season Sept. 9],’ adding, “Probably the week before, maybe. I don’t want to rush the process.
“I think we need to do what is best for our football team, whether that is at the end of spring or end of training camp. I don’t make that final decision. At the end of the day, we will make the right one and hopefully the kicker that we keep will help us win a lot of games this year.”
Griffen still out
Defensive end Everson Griffen, who missed last week’s open practice after coach Mike Zimmer said Griffen “had a little tweak,” unrelated to last year’s plantar fascia injury, did not practice again Wednesday.
Elflein and safety Andrew Sendejo also did not practice; Anthony Harris took first-team snaps with Sendejo out, while running back Mack Brown got most of the first-team work with the Vikings still easing Dalvin Cook back into practice following knee surgery last fall and Roc Thomas not practicing.
Former first-rounder Laquon Treadwell got some first-team work at wide receiver, while Stacey Coley (who limped off the practice field last week) and undrafted rookie Jeff Badet sat out.