Since we're looking for pretty much any news we can at this point, we're going to point out the dates for the Minnesota Vikings' off-season program for this season.
According to the press release put out by the NFL yesterday. . .
As per Article 21 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each club's official, voluntary nine-week offseason program is conducted in three phases:
Phase One consists of the first two weeks of the program with activities limited to strength and conditioning and physical rehabilitation only.
Phase Two consists of the next three weeks of the program. On-field workouts may include individual player instruction and drills as well as team practice conducted on a "separates" basis. No live contact or team offense vs. team defense drills are permitted.
Phase Three consists of the next four weeks of the program. Teams may conduct a total of 10 days of organized team practice activity, or "OTAs". No live contact is permitted, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.
Article 22 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement stipulates that clubs may hold one mandatory minicamp for veteran players. This minicamp. . .must occur during Phase Three of the offseason program. Head coaches hired after the end of the 2013 season are also entitled to conduct an additional voluntary veteran minicamp.
Each club may hold a rookie football development program for a period of seven weeks, which in 2014 may begin on May 12. During this period, no activities may be held on weekends, with the exception of one post-NFL Draft rookie minicamp, which may be conducted on either the first or second weekend following the draft.
For the Vikings, players can start reporting to Winter Park on Monday, 7 April.
That additional "voluntary veteran minicamp" should be a pretty good thing for Mike Zimmer and company. If you'll remember, Leslie Frazier didn't get that benefit in his first-year head coaching season due to the NFL lockout that was happening at that time.
The Vikings actually have a voluntary minicamp scheduled before the 2014 NFL Draft, one that will run from 29 April to 1 May. They also have OTAs scheduled from 28 May to 30 May, 3 June to 5 June, and 9 June to 12 June. Their mandatory minicamp is scheduled to run from 17 June to 19 June.
I haven't seen an official date for Training Camp yet, but I assume that it's going to take place starting on 28 July, as the last Monday in July is when things have traditionally kicked off in Mankato.