Light rain fell as the Vikings began the second padded practice of training camp on Monday, before blasts of thunder could be heard in the distance. So players briefly retreated into the locker room to wait out the storm. They returned to the rain-cooled field no more than 15 minutes later.
Here are some snippets from Monday’s practice.
Spirits heat up
Clouds covered up the Mankato sun, but that didn’t stop spirits from heating up into shoving matches. During goal-line drills, running back Matt Asiata scored on two consecutive plays before he and linebacker Emmanuel Lamur got into it on the next snap. Later during team drills, receiver Laquon Treadwell and cornerback Jabari Price wrestled each other to the ground away from a play. It’s all good to head coach Mike Zimmer, who said he enjoyed the feisty nature of practice and would ensure it didn’t happen in games.
Back and forth
The defense has made more plays than the offense early in camp, but Monday’s practice was a better contested race. Receiver Charles Johnson caught a crossing route from Teddy Bridgewater, speeding past defensive end Everson Griffen, who dropped into coverage. The two jawed back and forth on the way to their huddles. Rookie safety Jayron Kearse later grabbed his first interception of camp off third-string quarterback Joel Stave.
Mixing and matching
Two offensive line spots have rotated starters daily. On Monday, center Joe Berger and right tackle T.J. Clemmings worked exclusively with the first-team offense, a day after John Sullivan and Andre Smith manned those posts. Zimmer said he has some combinations he wanted to see before settling on a starting five.
“You better get that ball out quick!” – A starting Vikings defender to quarterback Teddy Bridgewater before he zipped a pass to tight end Kyle Rudolph down the middle.
Running back Jerick McKinnon left practice early after an apparent injury. Adrian Peterson (hamstring) and receiver Cordarrelle Patterson (shoulder area) did not practice on Monday. Both have yet to practice during two padded sessions as Peterson tweaked his leg in the offseason and Patterson fell hard on his left shoulder during Friday’s practice. Tight end Rhett Ellison (knee), guard Mike Harris (illness) and quarterback Taylor Heinicke (foot) remain sidelined.
Players’ day off