Entries in Minnesota Vikings (137)


Greg Jennings Still Happy He Left Green Bay

David Derner/Diamond Images/Getty Images(GREEN BAY, Wis.) -- Minnesota Vikings receiver Greg Jennings says he still doesn't miss playing for the Green Bay Packers.

Jennings also said he doesn't care if the Packers fans boo him when the Vikings play the Packers in Green Bay Thursday night.

Jennings left Green Bay in 2013 and signed a five-year, $45 million contract with the Vikings.

This is the second time Jennings will play at Lambeau Field since signing with Minnesota.

Packers Nation was upset when Jennings questioned their quarterback Aaron Rodgers' leadership ability. "Honestly, to be honest, no," Jennings said during a conference call when talking about whether he missed Green Bay. "It doesn't because -- and this is sincerity right here -- it really has nothing to do with football. From a football standpoint, I would have loved to have finished my career out in Green Bay, but from where I am spiritually and where I am with my family and the growth that we've had because of what we have around us educationally -- and there was some great educational systems there, as well -- but this is a step up for us."

Jennings, a two-time Pro Bowler, has played in all four games for the Vikings this season, catching 15 balls for 204 yards and a touchdown.

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Falcons Prepare for Vikings

Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images(ATLANTA) -- The Atlanta Falcons will travel to Minnesota to take on the Vikings on Sunday.

Minnesota will be sending out rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater for his first career start after veteran Matt Cassel was injured last weekend and ruled out for the remainder of the season.

"It's a lifelong dream to play and start in this league," Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan said of Bridgewater making his first start.  "It's a really special day; it's one that you'll never forget.  I think Teddy will do a great job."

Falcons head coach Mike Smith knows that facing a rookie quarterback will be tough for his defense.

"We've got a challenge in my mind with an athletic quarterback to be able to keep him in the pocket," Smith said after Monday's practice.

"He is very athletic. ... He was able to make some plays with his feet. That's another dynamic. ... I think you'll see they want to put the ball in his hands and give him some run-pass options. That's one of his strengths, the ability to extend plays, and he did a great job as a college quarterback extending plays. We'll have to do some different things in preparing for him, in regards to pass rush and pass-rush lanes."

Atlanta is averaging 34.3 points per game this season and Ryan went 21 of 24 and threw three touchdowns in their 56-14 rout of the Rams last Thursday.

"They've got a lot of weapons," Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said.  "We're going to have to do a great job of being in the right place.  We have to make sure we're in the right position of coverage all day."

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WR Simpson Cut by Vikings

Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images(EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn.) -- The Minnesota Vikings finally had enough with receiver Jerome Simpson.

Simpson was cut by the team Thursday, hours after ESPN reported the 28-year-old was cited on July 7 for misdemeanor charges of marijuana possession, driving on a limited license and having an open bottle in a motor vehicle.

While Simpson wasn't arrested, it is just the latest incident in which the receiver has been in trouble with the law.

Simpson pled guilty to a felony drug charge in March 2012 that resulted in a 15-day prison stint and three years of probation. He also was arrested for drunken driving last November, resulting in a three-game suspension to start this season.

Simpson played in 16 games last season for the Vikings, catching 48 balls for 726 yards and a touchdown.

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Vikings' Owner: We Made a Mistake

Andy Lyons/Getty Images(MINNESOTA) -- Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf said that the team finally did the right thing in regards to putting running back Adrian Peterson on the exemption list Tuesday.

Wilf and the rest of the Vikings organization believes that they made a mistake reactivating Peterson on Monday, but once major sponsors began to chime in, they did what was right.

The decision comes after the team announced earlier this week that it was reinstating him while the legal process involving charges of child abuse against the running back proceeded.

"We made a mistake and we need to get this right," Wilf said Wednesday. "It is important to always listen to our fans, the community and our sponsors."

"We embrace our role -- and the responsibilities that go with it -- as a leader in the community, as a business partner and as an organization that can build bridges with our fans and positively impact this great region. We appreciate and value the input we have received from our fans, our partners and the community," he continued.

Peterson cooperated during the process and will still get paid during the time he is away from the field.

"Adrian Peterson made a decision to take a voluntary leave with pay to take care of his personal and legal issues," the NFLPA's statement said. "The NFLPA and NFL worked with Adrian and the Minnesota Vikings to resolve this unique situation. We support this decision and hope the best for him and his family."

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Vikings Place Peterson on Exempt List

Ronald C. Modra/Sports Imagery/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Minnesota Vikings have announced that Adrian Peterson has been placed on the NFL’s Exempt/Commissioner’s Permission list and will not play this Sunday.

The decision comes after the team announced earlier this week that it was reinstating him while the legal process involving charges of child abuse against the running back proceeded.

The Vikings now say Peterson will not be allowed to participate in any team activities until his legal matters are behind him.

The Vikings issued the following statement:

“This has been an ongoing and deliberate process since last Friday’s news. In conversations with the NFL over the last two days, the Vikings advised the League of the team’s decision to revisit the situation regarding Adrian Peterson.  In response, the League informed the team of the option to place Adrian on the Exempt/Commissioner’s Permission list, which will require that Adrian remain away from all team activities while allowing him to take care of his personal situation until the legal proceedings are resolved. After giving the situation additional thought, we have decided this is the appropriate course of action for the organization and for Adrian.”

The statement continues: "We are always focused on trying to make the right decision as an organization. We embrace our role - and the responsibilities that go with it – as a leader in the community, as a business partner and as an organization that can build bridges with our fans and positively impact this great region. We appreciate and value the input we have received from our fans, our partners and the community.
While we were trying to make a balanced decision yesterday, after further reflection we have concluded that this resolution is best for the Vikings and for Adrian. We want to be clear: we have a strong stance regarding the protection and welfare of children, and we want to be sure we get this right. At the same time we want to express our support for Adrian and acknowledge his seven-plus years of outstanding commitment to this organization and this community. Adrian emphasized his desire to avoid further distraction to his teammates and coaches while focusing on his current situation; this resolution accomplishes these objectives as well.
We will support Adrian during this legal and personal process, but we firmly believe and realize this is the right decision. We hope that all of our fans can respect the process that we have gone through to reach this final decision."

The statement is signed by team owners Zygi Wilf and Mark Wilf.

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Adrian Peterson Sorry for the 'Hurt' He Brought to His Son

Ronald C. Modra/Sports Imagery/Getty Images(MINNEAPOLIS) -- Adrian Peterson said Monday that he wants the public to "understand how sorry I feel about the hurt I have brought to my child."

Peterson, the Minnesota Vikings running back who was deactivated for Sunday's game against the New England Patriots after being charged with child abuse for allegedly disciplining his son with a switch, made his first public statement on the issue Monday.

"I am not a perfect son. I am not a perfect husband. I am not a perfect parent, but I am, without a doubt, not a child abuser," he said in a statement released through his agent and posted on social media Monday.

"I never imagined being in a position where the world is judging my parenting skills or calling me a child abuser because of the discipline I administered to my son," Peterson said.

The incident occurred at his home in Texas this May but was not known publicly until Friday, when he was indicted. He allegedly hit his 4-year-old son with a thin branch, and the incident was reported by a doctor who was concerned about how much the boy was bleeding.

"I have to live with the fact that when I disciplined my son the way I was disciplined as a child, I caused an injury that I never intended or thought would happen," Peterson said in the statement. "I know that many people disagree with the way I disciplined my child. I also understand after meeting with a psychologist that there are other alternative ways of disciplining a child that may be more appropriate."

Peterson has never spoken publicly about the ways in which he was disciplined as a child, but alluded to having received similar punishments as a child. He said in his statement, "I have always believed that the way my parents disciplined me has a great deal to do with the success I have enjoyed as a man."

The Vikings deactivated the star running back for last week’s game but announced Monday that he will be reinstated this week. His next hearing is on Wednesday and he has not yet entered a plea.

Vikings general manager Rick Spielman said the team met with Peterson and his lawyers several times before allowing him to return to the team this week.

"This is a difficult path to navigate...on how a parent disciplines their child," Spielman said. He added, "We believe he deserves to play while the legal process plays out.”

Spielman declined to say whether Peterson's actions were child abuse. 

"We must defer to the legal system to determine if he went too far, but we cannot make that judgment," he said.

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Vikings Running Back Peterson Indicted, Deactivated

Andy Lyons/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson has been indicted by a Montgomery County, Texas grand jury on charges of reckless or negligent injury to a child. A warrant has been issued for Peterson's arrest and he will reportedly turn himself in.

Peterson is accused of using a switch, a flexible tree branch used to swat a child across the backside, on his four-year-old son last May. When the child returned to Minnesota, his mother took him to a doctor where multiple lacerations, cuts, and bruises where found across his thighs, buttocks, and hands.

A police report says the son told doctors his father hit him with a branch from a tree. It also quotes one doctor as saying the wounds were "child abuse" while another deemed the cuts "excessive".

The Vikings released a statement early Friday evening saying they were in the process of gathering information regarding the All-Pro's legal situation. Minnesota has since deactived the running back for Sunday's game against the New England Patriots. 

"This indictment follows Adrian’s full cooperation with authorities who have been looking into this matter.  Adrian is a loving father who used his judgment as a parent to discipline his son," said his attorney, Rusty Hardin, in a statement. "He has cooperated fully with authorities and voluntarily testified before the grand jury for several hours.  Adrian will address the charges with the same respect and responsiveness he has brought to this inquiry from its beginning.  It is important to remember that Adrian never intended to harm his son and deeply regrets the unintentional injury.”

Peterson is in his eighth season in the NFL, all with Minnesota, amassing more than 10,000 yards in his career.

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Adrian Peterson Excited about the Vikings Offense

Andy Lyons/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Running back Adrian Peterson has been carrying the Minnesota Vikings offense for years, but now he's excited to see how the rest of the team's playmakers have developed heading into the 2014 season.

“This is going to be the best offense I’ve played in. This is the offense I’ve been waiting for,” Peterson told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “We’ve got the pieces to facilitate moving the ball around. When Brett Favre was here, listen, when I saw those deep balls going up and guys making big plays, I was like, ‘Yeah!’ That makes your team very scary.”

During the offseason, the team hired Norv Turner to run their offense. Turner is one of the more proven coordinators in the game right now and will give the team a boost on game days.

As far as personnel goes, the team drafted quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, emerging playmakers Cordarrelle Patterson and Kyle Rudolph, as well as veteran Greg Jennings.

The 29-year-old Peterson has rushed for 10,115 yards in just seven seasons in the NFL.

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Vikings Name Matt Cassel Starting QB

Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Matt Cassel was named the Vikings starting quarterback on Monday, Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer announced.

Zimmer and offensive coordinator Norv Turner have been impressed with Cassel during the preseason.

Vikings running back Adrian Peterson explained why Cassel has the edge. He told the Pioneer Press on Sunday that the decision was based on "understanding the offense and who's running the offense better right now, you know, nothing to do with talent-wise, so that's why."

Cassel was the favorite to win the job over rookie quarterback Teddy Bridgewater and averaged 9.4 yards-per-attempt and completed 66.7 percent in three preseason games.

The Vikings will take on the St. Louis Rams on Sept. 7.

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Linval Joseph Returns to Practice After Shooting Incident

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images(MANKATO, Minn.) -- One day after being struck by a stray bullet at a nightclub, Linval Joseph was back at practice on Sunday for the Minnesota Vikings. Joseph, who was hit in the calf, is expected to be ready for the start of the regular season.

"I appreciate everyone's thoughts and concerns over the past 24 hours. I am extremely thankful that this was a minor injury for me," said Joseph in a statement released by the team. "My thoughts are with all of the victims at this time. I am looking forward to getting back onto the field with my teammates in the near future."

The shooting occurred near the back of 400 Soundbar in Minneapolis where the defensive tackle and some teammates spent several hours after their first preseason game. A total of nine people were wounded when a gunman opened fire in what police are calling a gang-related shooting. 

"He's pretty good, really, for the most part," head coach Mike Zimmer said. "He was in the meeting this morning and paying attention to what corrections he needs to make when he was playing. He's a fairly quiet guy anyway so I'm sure it shook him up like it shook all of us up. He's a very high-character, high-quality young man."

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