Vikings TE Visanthe Shiancoe is a go-to guy for reporters covering the team because of his candor and humor in answering questions. There’s no doubt he enjoys the attention that accompanies cameras and tape recorders, but it’s also clear to me that Shiancoe is truly a team player who puts the success of his team ahead of his own personal media-related interests.
With me, Shiancoe has always been a straight shooter and a reliable subject for interviews and vikings.com projects. So when I was curious as to whether this Vikings team had a different attitude at this point in the offseason than it’s had at this same point in previous offseasons, there was no question that #81 was my man to go to.
I caught up with Shiancoe following practice on Friday, once he finished up meeting with a larger group of reporters. On top of his loquacious demeanor, a friendly feud this offseason via Twitter with friend, former teammate and current Saints S Darren Sharper made the Vikings standout TE a popular target for reporters.
Shiancoe actually used discretion when asked about the Twitter battle with Sharper and moved the conversation on to other topics. He was asked about RB Adrian Peterson missing minicamp because of “Adrian Peterson Day” and had no qualms about the 3-time Pro Bowler not being at Winter Park. And of course he was asked about QB Brett Favre and his prospects for playing in 2010. Shiancoe’s response was that as long as the QB is here for Week 1, everything is good with him.
After all of that, I asked Shiancoe if this Vikings team, coming off an appearance and heart-breaking loss in the NFC Championship Game, had a different attitude or disposition at this point in the offseason compared to other offseasons. Shiancoe’s answer was interesting, and should also be encouraging for Vikings fans.
“The attitude of this team is that we have a lot of confidence and swagger, but we’re very humbled because of the loss (to New Orleans last year) and because it’s a brand new season,” Shiancoe explained to me. “The thing is, we don’t have to get motivated. We’re self-motivated as players, so we see each other out there working hard and doing extra things and it’s a contagious atmosphere out here.
“Our coach is allowing us to be professional out here and he’s seeing the results. He’s seeing us work, he’s seeing us doing these extra things to get that edge. That’s one thing that is very important in a championship team.”
Tags: Visanthe Shiancoe
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