Hi gang, sorry for the late post today. Kind of a busy day at work, then had some stuff to do around the house.
Saw an article in the Strib today that got Ben Leber's thoughts about the lockout. Leber is one of the players named in the antitrust lawsuit against the NFL, and although he is technically no longer employed by the Vikings and will be a free agent once this sordid affair is behind us, he's still acting, in many ways, as the Vikings plaer rep and keeping them informed of everything that's going on.
Which gets to the heart of the story. When asked about how this whole thing will play out...and more importantly when...Leber was pretty candid:
"My gut tells me, and this is my own opinion, that it will be an abbreviated training camp," he said. "We might get in three preseason games. I’m going to guess we’ll get in two preseason games. Get our normal couple of days off before the season starts and I think the season begins the way it should be [on Sept. 8] and is normal."
That's great news, and okay news, all at once. It's great, because I think we're getting close to a deal, which should have never gotten to this point to begin with. It also means that we only have to suffer through two pre-season games, which nobody likes, except the owenrs, who charge full price for the damn things. But it also means that the compressed time schedule will not give new QB Christian Ponder (or Joe Webb, if you're on team Spiderman) enough time to learn the offense by the time the regular season rolls around. So that means that getting a veteran QB, which was pretty certain to begin with, is now mandatory.
I'm fine with that, I guess. I'm a fan of 'sink or swim' when it comes to drafting a QB, because the only way you're going to get good is if you play, so throw the kid in and see if he can handle it. It may not be the best method, but it can't be worse than the Tarvaris Jackson stop-start-stop-start-collide your knee with Adrian Peterson way to try and figure out if a guy can get it done or not.
Oh, and a tip of the cap to Ben Leber. Kind of an unheralded free agent signing when he came on board, but the guy has been a team player from day one, and it's pretty stand up of him to keep Vikings players informed and in the loop when he's no longer officially a member of the team. I don't know if he's in the Vikings' plans for 2011, but I hope so. He's a quality player and solid veteran, and if he isn't back, I'm glad he wore the purple and gold.