In a few minutes the Vikings will take on the Cowboys in Dallas. While it will be the Vikings 4th preseason game, it will be their dress rehearsal for the regular season, which means the Vikings starters will likely get extensive time. Perhaps they will unveil some new plays that will strike fear into defenses. Or they could make everyone (casual fans) doubt the hard work Coach Zim has been putting in. Now the game is meaningless as far as wins and loses, but each and every player should be fighting to earn the right to be apart of the 2015-16 Vikings as they try and do what all of those before have failed to do. Who has what it takes?
Tonight the Vikings take on the surprisingly promising Raiders in the Vikings 3rd preseason game. Soon Teddy will face off against the 2nd best QB of last years draft, Bridgewater being the best, Derek Carr. While Carr may have the bigger arm, Teddy will prove tonight that he can and will make better decisions as he slices the Raiders secondary to pieces as he showcases the talented weapons that are growing around him. Then the man, the myth, the legendary Ponder-er will make an appearance as he poos in his pants while trying to decide what to do with the ball, before eating turf.
actually it is as this Saturday the Vikings take on the Bucs in our 2nd of 5 Pre-Season games. While the end result will not matter in the grand scheme of things, it should be a nice way to see how far players young and old have come. It will be interesting to see how many snaps the starters get as well as which WRs have found the ever elusive chemical combination, I mean chemistry with Teddy. Maybe the Flasher known as Patty will establish himself as a viable option or perhaps an unknown player will light it up like Victor Cruz against the Cowboys all those years ago, becoming a break out star for the Vikings.
With that all said let me remind you all that the VFB FF League Draft is set for Friday, Aug 21st at 7:00pm CDT.
Skol Vikings and all that stuff.
A few weeks ago, it became public knowledge that US Bank, after having assisted the team in assuring their downtown stadium got built, would retain the rights to name the new palace. It seems to be a foregone conclusion now that, like the vast majority of other teams in the league, we will eventually be forced to mention the name some large multibillion-dollar company every time we talk about our homefield. Not just any multibillion-dollar company, but the cliche among all of these, a BANK!
Here’s a list of all the current stadium names in the NFL:
Metlife – Insurance Company – Giants & Jets
Lambeau Field – Historic Head Coach – Packers
AT&T Stadium – Telecommunications – Cowboys
Arrowhead Stadium – Team Logo – Chiefs
FedEx Field – Shipping Company – Washington
Sports Authority Field at Mile High – Sporting Goods Conglomorate – Broncos
Sun Life Stadium – Life Insurance – Dolphins
Bank of America Stadium – BANK! – Panthers
Mercedez-Benz Superdome – Car Dealer – Saints
FirstEnergy Stadium – Energy Company – Browns
Ralph Wilson Stadium – Team Founder/Owner – Bills
Qualcomm Stadium – Telecommunications – Chargers
Georgia Dome – State of Georgia- Falcons
NRG Stadium – Energy Company – Texans
M&T Bank Stadium – BANK! – Ravens
Lincoln Financial Field – Holding Company (BANK!) – Eagles
Nissan Stadium – Car Dealer – Titans
Gillette Stadium – Bathroom Supplies – Patriots
Levi’s Stadium – Clothing Company – 49ers
EverBank Field – BANK! – Jaguars
CenturyLink Field – Telecommunications – Seahawks
Raymond James Stadium – Holding COmpany (BANK!) – Buccaneers
Paul Brown Stadium – Team Founder (Browns Legend) – Bengals
Edward Jones Dome – Financial Services – Rams
Heinz Field – Food Company – Steelers
Ford Field – Car Dealer – Lions
Lucas Oil Stadium – Fossil Distributing Company – Colts
Soldier Field – US Troops Recognition – Bears
TCF Stadium – BANK! – Temporary squatting grounds for the Vikings
So, out of 32 teams, we have 2 Energy Companies, 2 Insurance Companies, 3 Telecommunications Companies, 3 car dealers, and 7 Banks/Investment Firms! Add to that, 6 other stadiums named by a unique style of business, (Bathroom Supplies, Food, Clothes, Fossils, Shipping, Sporting Goods), and we’re left with only 6 venues that have a name that mean something to their respective fans.
So how can we get around that? After a national bank has invested over a hundred million dollars on the naming rights, it seems like a lost cause now. But maybe the future isn’t quite so bleak. Afterall, Mall Of America Field was still the Metrodome to all of the loyal fans, and I’m pretty sure most Broncos fans stick with Mile High Stadium, especially since the name has an extra meaning since November 6, 2012.
But of course, those were names that existed before money grubbing owners sold out for a little extra profit. So where does our hope lie? Maybe it lies lies in doing something new and revolutionary in the stadium naming history. What if someone were able to convince US Bank to give us a meaningful name, while keeping their own name attached to the stadium. Something akin to US Bank Field at Valhalla Stadium, Asgaard Field at US Bank Stadium or Ragnarok Battlegrounds at US Bank Stadium. This way, whenever mentioned on the radio or TV, the Bank would still get their advertising, but the fans would get to call it something that they loved!
But what about this makes it revolutionary? That’s where my idea kicks into gear. The Bank could generate a whole lot of extra advertising and positive vibes towards their company by holding a stadium naming competition! Get a list of the best names anyone can add to the boring US Bank portion of the name, and have a fan vote to decide what our home will be called! Just think about how much interest a gimmick like this would generate in the team AND its sponsors! Now if only there were a way to contact the sponsors and convince them that they need to go with my idea…
Anyways, throw your vote in below! Do you like any of the names I suggested, or do you have a better one that I haven’t proposed?
Something this grandiose deserves a better name than U.S. Bank
Currently we are in the middle of the long wait till training camp, July 25th, and as a result nothing of substance has really occurred, which is a good thing. No Vikings’ player has been involved in legal trouble and none of them are holding out, so it is a good offseason; minus the LBs seemingly dropping like flies during OTAs giving guys like former CFL S/LB Brian Peters extra reps to get acclimated. Hopefully when it comes time the starting LBs stay healthy, so the defense can run at a high level.
On Friday the Vikings rookies got their first taste of what playing for Coach Zim is going to be like. Some of these guys were impressive like Waynes, who shocked Zim by how quickly he has picked up new techniques. Zim has also said it likely will be starting out at MLB, but may eventually move to WLB (likely when Greenway moves on). Another interesting note from the first day of rookie practice is Clemmings will get a shot at LG.
Rounds 4-7 will be today and the Vikings have a nice amount of draft capital remaining. Hopefully with this excess of picks that they have the can find more gems like Fusco and Wright, instead of waste of picks like Kendall James and Everett Dawkins. The next seven and a half hours will be action packed even though many fans will not pay attention.
Yesterday was pretty eventful for many draft prospects, but today those that were overlooked, undervalued, or just fell because of bad decisions have a chance to find new homes. They will not be as highly talked about as the 32 players taken in round one, but the guys taken over the next 2 rounds are the foundation of Super Bowl teams. Will the Vikings help out Bridgewater by selecting a WR or OLinemen early? Will they continue to build up the defense? Can Speils find a way to move around over the next two round and get more then the current 2 building blocks we are expected to take?
The answer to these questions and more will come now.
With the draft only hours away, I thought it would be fun to go back and look at Speilman’s previous draft picks, since he received full rule over the draft day decisions, and grade how each one has panned out for the team thus far.
The first part in the grading process was determining how each pick should be graded. You may or may not agree with my grading scale, (more than likely will not), and I welcome you to debate it in the comments below! Please note that this scale is for players after their first year in the league. I figured it makes sense to expect more out of players as they have been in the league longer, so players who have been here one year will have expectations shifted over to the left one column and players who have been here two years will have expectations shifted over to the left two columns – that is unless they have already made it to the leftmost column, in which case I don’t think it would be fair to set expectations any higher.
Next came grading each pick. These grades are based on their performance in the most recent year only. So players like Kalil and Patterson who have regressed from a pro-bowl standing will get no extra credit for previous performance, and players like Floyd will receive no demerits for having warmed up the bench for a year.
Based on these metrics, Speilman has graded above average in his 3 years, with a total GPA of 2.29, having done the best in the most recent year and the worst in his second year. His best success is in the early rounds, and he has been hit and miss on the picks later in the draft. The biggest misses, from a draft value standpoint seem to come from the day-2 (2nd and 3rd round) selections. Granted he has only made 3 picks in those rounds in the past three years, only one of them has graded out favorably, which is pretty disappointing for such an early pick. This gives him a strong argument to continue to use those picks to move back into the first round, if a good player has slipped down to the late 20s.
Will he go 4-years in a row with multiple first round picks? The biggest miss so far has been Patterson, with Kalil not far behind, but there’s still plenty of hope that both players will turn their career around in a big way in 2015.