Welcome! Leave your Vikings questions here and I'll do my best to get to them all during this hour.
Publicly and, from what I've heard privately, the Vikings are not putting a concrete timetable to Bradford's left knee injury, which consists of swelling in the same area he had two ACL surgeries in 2013 and 2014.
With that said, the Vikings feel good enough about Bradford's health that they're not going to bring in another quarterback at this time, according to Mike Zimmer. They're walking a fine line needing Bradford to be healthy for a fighting chance this season, so putting him out there too early would be problematic. My money is on him not playing this week vs. Tampa Bay, but he could prove me wrong.
I do think this was a factor to the penalties. Not sure it's an excuse for poor execution. The Vikings were penalized 11 times in Pittsburgh, including the 49-yard DPI on Waynes and the early jump by Robison that directly led to Pittsburgh touchdowns. At least from Robison, that's not a mental error you're used to seeing.
No, they made Kyle Sloter their third QB over Leidner.
Sloter was a college receiver not too long ago, before transferring to Northern Colorado to pursue playing quarterback. He eventually got in because of an injury and went on to set Northern Colorado's single-season record with 29 touchdown passes last fall. Sloter impressed even more in Denver this preseason, throwing for 413 yards and three touchdowns (no picks) on 31 of 43 passing. Albeit it was against and with backups.
He's a big, strong-armed kid who needs to come along more in the Vikings playbook to get serious looks. However, he's currently an injury to Keenum away from playing.
I can't speak for whether or not the Wilf ownership would sign off on that move, for starters. Beyond that, the Vikings feel Bradford is set to return soon and turning over the backup QB position isn't something they're currently considering.
Ha. I'll just say toughness isn't something I'd question in Bradford. You see the 15 games last year?
Treadwell had a career high 3 grabs for 33 yards last week, a baby step in the right direction. He's in a tough spot, because he's not being featured the way a typical 1st-rd WR would be in an offense. He's also not the game-breaking downfield threat you see OBJ or Julio become right away. I believe he'll need to make his money in the NFL as a Boldin-type receiver, which may be his ceiling barring further injury. Building trust will be a starter. It's not hard to see the QBs trust Rudolph, Diggs, Thielen after last year's proven production from all three.
I'm starting to wonder where Brock's window is? He told coaches last week he was only ready to play outside cornerback, not nickel, due to playbook complexity. They decided he wasn't ready at all and deactivated him. I think Brock has potential to make a difference, though it could be more in the slot. I'd be shocked to see the Vikings bail on playing time for Trae Waynes in just his third season.
No takeaways is a departure from when the Vikings defense dominated last season. I think a few factors play into it -- facing Brees and Roethlisberger out of the gate and, at least in Pittsburgh, they never had a lead to force the Steelers into bad spots.
Yes, they've got room. The salary cap isn't an issue in Minnesota. They've got more than $18 million on this year's cap.
I think it's important for fans to fully understand Mike Zimmer would've given his eye for a Super Bowl and that's not much of an exaggeration. He's a 'football guy' through and through. So after games, and losses like the one in Pittsburgh, he can be really emotional like he was on Sunday. He admitted such Monday and said he gets irked by getting asked the same questions repeatedly. He needs to expect that regarding the starting quarterback being injured. Zimmer was much better Monday, if you saw the presser.
With Forbath, yes it's a concern of the Vikings that he keeps missing extra points. If this team gets its QB situation ironed out eventually, they're expected to be in some close games where 1 point will be critical. Or 3 points for that matter. So Forbath's leash isn't that long....
Remember they cut Marhsall Koehn largely because he missed an extra point in the preseason. They wanted accuracy and consistency.
No Trae isn't hopeless. He's a very talented player who needs to just find a groove similar to how Xavier Rhodes used to flash one play and get burned or flagged the next. I wonder sometimes how much Mike Zimmer's controlled coaching style, down to the steps in techniques, turns young studs into robots out there.
I can't blame the panic. This franchise has been searching for a steady QB since 2009 and they finally appeared to have one in Bradford's 16th game, when he posted that 143.0 rating vs. the Saints. Then he gets hurt when he was only hit twice? It's rough out there.
Yes they're improved, but still very much a work in progress. Nick Easton at left guard has been a little rough so far. Elflein is taking his lumps as a rookie, still getting some snap stuff down. Reiff is a middle-tier left tackle and Remmers has his limitations. Oh, then there's Berger at age 35. With all that said, it's an upgrade over last season. They shouldn't have games totally tanked by the O-line, and they didn't in Pittsburgh against a very good front. There were issues, but the O-line wasn't why they lost.
Ha, no I'm a Gopher. I'm just not bailing on Waynes at this point when he's starting his third season, had three picks last year and flashed some things. Zim is renowned as an excellent defensive coach, not just DBs, but that's been his specialty. It just takes time with some of these guys and there's an example on the other sideline in Xavier. You remember Rhodes' third season? If I'm recalling correctly, Keenan Allen had a field day on him in Week 3 that year.
But playing these dudes at corner is the only way they really develop, I think. Pulling Waynes for, who? A chance at Brock, who just joined? I just don't see it.
Bridgewater is eligible to return to practice starting Week 7, so Oct. 16. That's the earliest he could see a practice field and he absolutely will need to practice before he's thrown into a game. How will Bridgewater's knee respond to game movements like dodging defensive linemen, spinning out on the run, etc? Let alone getting hit and getting back up. There's a lot that needs to be seen before Teddy plays in a game again. Keep in mind the Vikings have financial incentive to keep Bridgewater on PUP, where if he stays his contract will 'toll' to 2018. He's currently not under contract in 2018.
I do agree, they need special teams to be big for them the way they have in the past. Their coverage units have been a plus, but they've lost the bite of Cordarrelle Patterson being a TD threat every time he returned one. McKinnon just isn't the same tackle-breaking threat. Zimmer admitted a mistake when discussing McKinnon returning two in Pittsburgh from WAY deep. They started at their own 17 and 18 because of those returns. I think you'll see them take the touchback moving forward.
Forbath needs to tighten it up too or risk losing his job.
I think the GM has the shorter leash here. QB and O-line issues might be too much to overlook, even if nobody could see Teddy's injury coming.
It happened vs. the Saints. Twisted his knee, per Zimmer.
Yeah we haven't seen him blow up the same way he did as a part-time pass rusher last year. That said, I'm not sleeping on this dude. He's a big deal and I think you're seeing offenses treat him that way at times. Everson Griffen went through this a couple years ago, where he was surprised to see teams doubling and chipping him to slow his pass rush. Now you're seeing Griffen blow up with a big-time threat on the other side.