Big crowd sees serious work
Fans nearly filled the stands to form the largest crowd of camp yet on Friday afternoon, under a punishing sun that inflamed temperatures into the mid-80s. It was the last practice without pads, yet players stuck to a high-tempo pace with little frills. No music has been played before or during practices with only a few brief breaks and special teams drills providing relief for most players.
A play-action goal
Quarterback Sam Bradford has said he’d like to see the Vikings strike a better balance on offense between short and deep passes, while using play-action to open up throwing lanes down the field. Bradford did just that Friday when he faked a handoff to rookie Dalvin Cook and found tight end Kyle Rudolph for a 20-yard toss down the seam.
A tedious rehab
Defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd spent an hour on the side of practice stepping through what appears to be a tedious rehab process. Floyd still hasn’t been seen running. He sidestepped and crouched his way through various drills with a Vikings athletic trainer on Friday. The methodical movements come nearly 11 months after he suffered nerve damage affecting his quad as complications of knee surgery.
Veteran cornerback Terence Newman stopped after signing some autographs and popped up two fingers over the head of safety Jayron Kearse while Kearse was doing an on-camera interview. Newman smiled, walked away and said “because he didn’t sign for the kids!”
“You ain’t doing nothing if you ain’t throwing up.” — offensive line coach Tony Sparano after running his linemen through drills.
Linebacker Kentrell Brothers was carted off the field after he went down clutching his left hamstring during an 11-on-11 period. Brothers was helped up but was in obvious pain as he grabbed at his leg. Running back Jerick McKinnon, who exited Thursday with an undisclosed injury, did not practice again Friday. He said he planned to return Saturday, adding, “We’ll see.”