It was an interesting day at Mankato. As Eric told you earlier, Bryant McKinnie was released.
Wow. Just, wow. McKinnie, for all his faults, was still an above average tackle, and we now presume that Charlie Johnson will now be the guy to beat at LT. McKinnie's side of the story, as reported to TMZ...yeah, TMZ...was that McKinnie asked for his release once the Vikings put him on the non-football injury list because he was overweight and battling high cholesterol (as reported/tweeted by Tom Pelissero).
And you know, that makes perfect sense, he said with as little sarcasm as possible.
Sure, that's believable, and it's a good plan. No, really, I wouldn't want to make $5 million dollars this year as long as I worked on making weight goals, and you know what, if I was left to my own devices for 8 months and blew up like the blueberry kid in Willie Wonka And The Chocolate Factory, I think it's a great plan to train on my own and then 'catch on' with another team by the end of the season. At this rate, McKinnie will get so big small planets will be orbiting around him by the end of the year.
Look, I kid about McKinnie, but if he has high cholesterol, as has been reported, he might be in the early stages of some serious health concerns, and I hope he gets that under control. And McKinnie, for all his faults, was still a top 20 tackle in the league, and Charlie Johnson (hey, a name that isn't impossible to spell, thanks front office!) is not an upgrade. But that said, Johnson now looks like he'll be the guy to beat at LT, but a new training camp battle has opened up at another position. Maybe if McKinnie had hired this guy to motivate him in the off season, this wouldn't have happened:
One, Tubby Tubby
For the rest of today's news from Mankato, join me after the jump and we'll tell you everything that happened.
Coach Leslie Frazier sent a message with this move, make no mistake. He is firmly in control of this team, and regardless of who you are, you're going to do what's expected. I think it's safe to say that there will be no plane rides to Mississippi...or anywhere...to beg anyone to come play for him. And that's a refreshing change.
Tom Pelissero of ESPN 1500 reports that the battle for the nickel back position seems to be between Asher Allen and Chris Cook in the early stages of camp, and there was no mention made of the safety play.
For you Spiderman fans, Mighty Joe struggled, throwing two picks in 7 on 7, and fumbling a handoff to Lorenzo Booker. Personally, I like Cook. Before he tore both meniscuses...meniscii...whatever, he played some pretty good football, and looked like he could be a solid contributor.
But then every defensive back on the team hurt their knee, and Cook was done for the year. For me, optimally the Vikes CB depth would be Antoine Winfield, Cedric Griffin, and Chris Cook at the nickel position.
Joe Webb struggled in the 7 on 7 drills, and generally looked pretty bad at the quarterback position, but fear not Spiderman fans, Pelissero reports:
Frazier said there is "a very good chance" the Vikings will find a role on offense for Webb, who has been taking the bulk of reps with the No. 1 offense in McNabb's absence. "I'm sure they have a couple of packages in," Webb said, "but right now, my main focus is just concentrate on running the first-team offense."
None of the 15 players signed as free agents can practice until Thursday, and guys like Donovan McNabb and Remi Ayodele, and other guys that will be starters or significant contributors, like Husain Abdullah and Erin Henderson, are sitting on the sidleines and watching.
It's getting interesting in Mankato, folks.