Vikings Happy To Suit Up

Vikings Happy To Suit Up Click to Enlarge Photo: KNSI Sports

(KNSI) - How different is a training camp practice with pads compared to without them?

According to head coach, Mike Zimmer, “It’s real football.”

Zimmer then elaborated a bit more by describing how it’s much different, especially on the offensive line.

“In shorts you can evaluate how they take the right steps, are they going to the right guy, are they coming off the right coverage and now they gotta do those and try to get some movement on this guy, see how low his pad level is, the physicality of it.”

The offensive line still has plenty of questions to be answered as Pat Elflein is currently on the PUP list, leaving the Vikings without their starting center.

One question that has been answered already is who will be taking over Tony Sparano’s roll as offensive line coach.

The Vikings decided to have Clancy Barone and Andrew Janocko take over offensive line coaching duties and move Todd Downing to tight ends coach.

Zimmer seemingly loves the competition aspect of training camp at all levels.

When asked if Nick Easton will move back to guard when Elflein comes back, Zimmer simply stated, “We’ll see.”

Veteran safety Harrison Smith said their coach thinks that they looked a little rusty.

“Zim said it kinda looked like it was our first day in pads so obviously we got a lot of work to do.”

In other training camp news, Holton Hill (pictured below), has impressed fans, coaches and even players with his performance to date.

The former Texas Longhorn was scooped-up by the Vikings after the draft after he fell out of the draft, possibly due to off-the-field issues.

Dalvin Cook has also looked impressive with and without pads as his explosiveness has been on full-display.

The second-year running back had surgery on his damaged ACL merely 10 months ago.

When asked how he felt after his first practice with contact, Cook simply stated, "I Feel great, they got a plan for me around here, I just stick to it."

It’s early yet, but if Cook can return to his pre-injury self, the new-look Vikings offense should have no trouble putting up points.

Two players looking to solidify their role with the team, Rashod Hill and Stacy Coley did not participate in the afternoon practice.

Along with battling for the starting right tackle position, Hill has als been battling some flu-like symptoms since Saturday’s practice.

Coley has a great chance to make the team as their third or fourth wideout but is dealing with an apparent leg injury.

The Vikings continue training camp in Eagan tomorrow; the players then have the day off on Wednesday.

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