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As we mentioned in the previous entry, Vikings Head Coach Brad Childress called into the Power Trip Morning Show today to discuss the LaDainian Tomlinson visit as well as several other Vikings-related topics.
The audio from the interview is available via KFAN’s website with this MP3 file. The interview is at the end of the segment.
Here are a few other non-Tomlinson notes from the interview this morning…
Adrian Peterson’s fumbles: Peterson had a handful of fumbles this season that cost the Vikings in critical situations and it’s an issue that has brought on some criticism for #28. When asked about it today, Childress said that the issue has been brought to the RB’s attention frequently and that he’s confident Peterson will “take care” of it. “I don’t want to eliminate his running style,” Peterson said. “He has an aggressive, attacking running style. So I don’t want to take anything away from that. However it’s critical obviously that the ball travels with you.”
On finding a replacement for Chester Taylor: Should Tomlinson sign with the Vikings, he’ll fulfill the same role (although perhaps a bit differently) that Taylor filled while with the team. Other RBs have also been linked to the Vikings as possible replacements for Taylor, including Brian Westbrook and even incoming rookies who will be drafted in April.
But Childress suggested another possible solution to filling the role vacated by Taylor.
“Probably not enough has been said about Albert Young,” the head coach said. “Albert Young has been a guy that’s developed here tremendously the last two years. As a matter of fact, Brett Favre and I had a long conversation about him. He believes he’s got the chance to be a good back in this league.”
Childress on the greatest thing to come out of the 2009 season: “I guess first of all, the greatest thing to come out of it was the enthusiasm of this state and community about the Vikings. Everybody started with the toe in the water. ‘Are they gonna be this? How are they going to play in September?’ But I just think as the season went, it really became a snowball (effect).”
Childress then added, “In the locker room, I have one of the [most fun] bunch of guys that I’ve probably lined up and coached in thirty years. And certainly not without fifty-three different challenges when you’re talking about the Jared Allens, Pat Williamses, Steve Hutchinsons, Brett Favres, Chester Taylors.
“There are personalities galore in there. But one thing those guys never were afraid to do was to take a challenge. They competed tooth and nail with each other, and it didn’t make any difference whether they were on the football field or playing cards or shooting hoops. They’re avid competitors in all areas. They weren’t afraid to work, they weren’t afraid to take criticism constructively and improve. That’s always satisfying and I had a great time doing it.”
Tags: Adrian Peterson, Albert Young, Jared Allen, Pat Williams, Steve Hutchinson
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It’s been a busy week for Vikings Head Coach Brad Childress as he’s continued to touch every area of his football team in an effort to improve the roster heading into the 2010 season. Earlier this week he was at the University of Minnesota’s pro day, then toward the end of the week he was part of a large Vikings contingent that spent time with free agent RB LaDainian Tomlinson in the Twin Cities and he’s also surely focusing some of his attention on the trial involving Pro Bowl DTs Kevin Williams and Pat Williams.
Even with all of that going on, though, the Vikings head coach took some time out of his Friday morning to speak with KFAN’s Power Trip Morning Show, which is hosted by former Vikings long snapper Mike Morris.
The topic receiving the most attention during Friday morning’s visit was Tomlinson’s visit over the past couple of days. With Chester Taylor having bolted town for the Chicago Bears, the Vikings have an open spot on the depth chart and Tomlinson is widely considered to be a great fit in that role.
LT came into town on Wednesday evening and left late yesterday afternoon for his next visit, which is with the NY Jets. While typically it’s bad news for a prospective free agent to visit and then leave town without a deal, Childress indicated that conventional thinking in that regard might not apply in this specific scenario.
“A lot of times when you only have one [team] involved, the agents don’t like that game,” Childress said. “A lot of times they take them and create the atmosphere that there’s want somewhere else. And there may be in fact want somewhere else. Something to drive the deal.”
Childress said Tomlinson gave others his word that he’d visit them before signing somewhere and the head coach also said that Tomlinson is “a man of his word,” so perhaps it’s not surprising that the 5-time Pro Bowler and future Hall of Famer will make at least one other stop during his time on the market.
While Tomlinson was here, though, all indications are that the RB was impressed with what he saw and heard. One would think the presence of QB Brett Favre on the roster – or not on the roster – would be a factor in Tomlinson’s decision, but Childress mentioned another member of the Vikings team actually spoke with LT while he was visiting.
“I actually put him on the phone yesterday with Adrian,” Childress said. “They were able to talk for a little bit down in (RBs) coach (Eric) Bieniemy’s meeting room. I think there’s a tremendous admiration of one toward another.”
Ultimately, given Tomlinson’s specific circumstances at this point in his career and given how the Vikings feel about LT, a union between the two seems like a solid fit and one that would advance both parties agendas – reaching and winning the Super Bowl.
“We had a great visit with him,” Childress said. “Obviously he’s been in one place for a good, long period of time and had a great run. But he’s got some things left and one of the things that absent is an opportunity to win that ring and get it on his finger. He’s been close and I’m sure he’s looking for teams that he feels like have a chance to get him close again.
“I really look at it as a guy that if we were fortunate enough to get him, we would have a 1 and 1A. He understands that dynamic. But he can do all the things that he needs to do in this offense. “
Tags: Adrian Peterson, Eric Bieniemy
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