As we get closer to the draft, offseason mini-camps are opening and players are reporting to camp. Here’s news on that and other notes you might have missed.
Vikings are already back to work
You may not believe this, but the Vikings players are already back at work at Winter Park.
Since Minnesota has a brand new coaching staff, the NFL gave them a two-week head start to its offseason program and also award them an extra voluntary minicamp. Because of collective bargaining agreement, the first two weeks of the offseason program cannot include on-field workouts. Players can meet with the new coaching staff and workout in the weight room.
There will probably not be any Monday or Thursday Night Football games at TCF Bank Stadium in the next two seasons.
As everyone knows, The Vikings will be playing at TCF Bank Stadium, home of the Minnesota Golden Gophers for the next two seasons while their new stadium is being built. Reports are the Vikings and the University of Minnesota have agreed that the Vikings can only play host to one weeknight game each season only when class is not in session. So unless the Vikings get a Thursday night game in Week 16 or Week 17, it looks like there may not be any night nationally televised games at TCF Bank Stadium this season.
The Vikings could potentially have a home Saturday night football game. The only restriction for Saturday games would be that you can’t play a Saturday night Vikings game the same day as a Saturday Golden Gophers football game. Since the Gophers regular season schedule ends at the end of November, that shouldn’t be a problem.
The Vikings could potentially have a Sunday night game at home this season, but the NFL usually rewards teams that were good the season before with Sunday Night Football home games. Given that TCF Bank Stadium is outdoors, it might not be a bad idea for the Vikings to play their games earlier on Sunday afternoons.
Cordarrelle Patterson said The Pro Bowl “Did Me Wrong.”
Patterson was added to the 2014 Pro Bowl team as a “return specialist” for Team Sanders. Since NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell eliminated kickoffs during the Pro Bowl, Patterson was used as a gunner and punt returner. He ended the game with two punt returns for one yard and zero tackles.
Patterson spoke with Vikings.com writer Mike Wobschall after the team optional workouts on Monday and here’s what he said about his first Pro Bowl appearance.
“The Pro Bowl, man. They did me wrong, man. They used me as gunner. I never did gunner in my life. And they took the kickoff return out of the game and I consider myself one of the best kickoff returners out there, you know. A lot of guys on the list, too. But they can’t do that to a guy like me. They played me. And I hope next year I get there and I hope they use me a little more.”
Look for Patterson to be featured more in new offensive coordinator’s Norv Turner’s system. If that happens, maybe Viking fans will see Patterson in the Pro Bowl not as a return specialist, but as a wide receiver.
Minnesota pitches to host its first Super Bowl since 1992
Minnesota’s Super Bowl Bid Committee has officially submitted its pitch to host Super Bowl LII in 2018. The city of Minneapolis was announced as a finalist last October. The Metrodome hosted Super Bowl XXVI, and team and state officials hope the Vikings’ new $975 million stadium, which is set to be completed in 2016 can bring the big game back to the Twin Cities.