NFC North Know-It-All: Minnesota Vikings Training Camp Preview


May 29, 2013; Eden Prairie, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson (84) talks with wide receiver Greg Jennings (15) at organized team activities at Winter Park. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

It’s finally here. Training camp time. Now Bears fans, you should know it’s important to focus on the NFC North as a whole rather than just zeroing-in on the Bears. The last training camp preview is of the Minnesota Vikings. With the 2012 season seemingly rested on Adrian Peterson’s shoulders, it’s apparent that changes needed to be made for the 2013 season to lift the weight off Peterson. The Vikings did make significant moves in the offseason to try and better  both sides of the ball.

Who’s in?

After a disappointing 2012 season with 366 receiving yards and four touchdowns, Greg Jennings decided to sign with NFC North rival Minnesota Vikings. Last year was Jennings most disappointing season in his professional career, yet he managed five-year, $45 million deal. I’m not entirely sure if he’s worth it.

In a trifecta of picks late in the first round of this years draft, the Minnesota Vikings took DT Sharrif Floyd, CB Xavier Rhodes and WR Cordarrelle Patterson. Sharrif Floyd was a prospect favorite that’s a big, fast and young force. Xavier Rhodes was ranked the second best cornerback in the 2013 NFL Draft, who played as a solid, consistent corner at FSU. Finally, the wide receiver out of Cordarrelle Patterson…the wildcard. Patterson played two medicore years at junior college with his final collegiate career at Tennessee. You could classify him as a unproved bigger Percy Harvin. That which we will all have to see.

As Desmond Bishop was on his way out of Green Bay, the Minnesota Vikings swooped him up. The Vikings snagged him for a one-year $1.35 million deal, a steal, for the veteran inside linebacker. Not to mention he has a thirst to pulverize his former team twice in one season.

The Vikings signed on Matt Cassel as the backup to Christian Ponder. From starting QB at KC to Ponder’s backup, gotta love Matt Cassel.

Who’s out?

In a dramatic exit, Percy Harvin left the Minnesota Vikings to join Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks. The Vikings lost a pretty important piece in Harvin.

2012 Rewind

Adrian Peterson stole the show last season, running for 2,097 rushing yards and helped the Vikings make the post season. After finishing the season 10-6, the Vikings squeezed the NFC Wildcard spot in the last game of the season. But their success was short lived as the Packers bumped them out of the playoffs as they won 24-10 in the first round.

Key Questions to be answered in training camp

How will the new offense look like with Jennings and Patterson?

Will Leslie Fraizer try to replace Percy Harvin with Cordarrelle Patterson?

Can Floyd and Rhodes step into starting roles on defense?