Vikings Have Big Plans For “Salute To The Military Game” This Sunday

Posted by Mike Wobschall on November 18, 2011 – 5:46 pm

As part of the NFL’s Salute To Service initiative, the Vikings will incorporate several pregame, in-game and halftime military-themed elements into their game presentation for this Sunday’s contest against the Oakland Raiders at Mall of America Field.

Jared Allen has teamed with Paul Jr. Designs to help raise money for Jared Allen’s Homes For Wounded Warriors (JAH4WW). Paul Jr. is the star of the popular reality show American Choppers, and founded a custom motorcycle business upstate New York, Paul Jr. Designs. He has created an Army-themed motorcycle that will lead the Vikings out of the tunnel on Sunday.

Here is a list of other elements the Vikings will incorporate into this Sunday’s game presentation format to salute the men and women – and their families – who sacraficed so much to defend, earn and preserve our freedome.

– Minnesota National Guard 34th Infantry Division Red Bulls Band – pregame and halftime performances along with the National Anthem.
— Iowa National Guard (Red Bulls) Return Ceremony (recently returned from Afghanistan) – halftime.
— Stan “Crusher” Kowalski sounds the Gjallarhorn – decorated WWII veteran and Professional Wrestling pioneer.
— Hometown Hero – Sergeant Major Cindy Kallberg: the first female enlisted advisor of the Minnesota National Guard.
— Honorary Captain – Staff Sergeant Katheryn Morrill of the Minnesota Air National Guard’s 133rd Airlift Wing will accompany team captains to mid-field for the coin toss just before kickoff. Staff Sergeant Morrill, from Le Sueur, was selected as the “National Outstanding Airman of the Year” for the Air National Guard.
— Cheerleaders will be wearing military themed outfits in the 2nd half.
— The tunnel will be extended with cheerleaders and National Guard members standing side by side for player intros and nat’l anthem.
— Minnesota Military Appreciation Fund representatives will present two Purple Heart Recipients with grants on-field pregame.
— Season Ticket Owners who are veterans or current soldiers will hold the Norseman flag at midfield during player intros.
— Minnesota National Guard Display outside Gate H will include a Howitzer.

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Frazier Pleased With Week Of Practice, Mindset Going Into Raiders Game

Posted by Mike Wobschall on November 18, 2011 – 3:16 pm

There was no shortage of disappointment, both inside the Vikings locker room and among the fan base, following the Vikings lackluster outing last Monday night against the Packers in Green Bay. Facing a short week and another division leader this weekend, the Vikings were forced to get over that loss quickly and focus on another tough opponent.

Vikings Head Coach Leslie Frazier met with reporters on Friday following the team’s last full practice before Sunday’s game against Oakland, and he thinks the team is ready to produce a better output than they did just five days ago at Lambeau Field.

“Based on the way we practiced, I think the mindset seems to be where it needs to be,” Frazier explained. “That’s the impression that I get. Now we have to go out and play the game, but we have practiced well, we really have. Good focus, good attention to detail. We’ll see whether it translates to the type of performance that we need for Sunday.”

Outside of practicing well this week, Frazier pointed to the fact that the Vikings will be playing at home as another reason to expect the team to perform well on Sunday. The Vikings are 19-9 at Mall of America Field since the start of the 2008 season, and another sold-out crowd will pack the stadium on Sunday.

“I think we put three good days together of work on a short week,” Frazier said. “I really feel like our guys will go out and compete and play hard on Sunday, and are really looking forward to being in front of our fans at Mall of America Field. It should be a good contest against a very good football team, and as I mentioned earlier this week, we’re anxious to get back on the field and play a game.”

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Abdullah, Herrera Rule Out; Erin Henderson, Shiancoe Questionable

Posted by Mike Wobschall on November 18, 2011 – 2:33 pm

On Friday the Vikings and Raiders ruled several starters out of this weekend’s game at Mall of America Field. Let’s get to the details.

For the Vikings, S Husain Abdullah (concussion) and RG Anthony Herrera (knee) have been ruled out. For the Raiders, RB Darren McFadden (foot) and CB Chris Johnson (groin/hamstring) have also been ruled out. Others who will not play include Chris Cook (not injury-related) for the Vikings and QB Jason Campbell (collarbone) and WR Jacoby Ford (foot) for the Raiders.

The Vikings have ruled LB Erin Henderson (hamstring) and TE Visanthe Shiancoe as questionable for the game; both players have been limited the last two days of practice. The Vikings listed WR Michael Jenkins (knee), LS Cullen Loeffler (shoulder) and QB Christian Ponder (hand) as probable.

The Raiders have listed Michael Huff, Michael Mitchell, Richard Seymour, Manase Tonga and DeMarcus Van Dyke as questionable and Kevin Boss, Matt Giordano, Sebastian Janikowski and Samson Satele as probable.

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Vikings To Adopt A Room At Amplatz Children’s Hospital

Posted by Mike Wobschall on November 18, 2011 – 1:10 pm

Head Coach Leslie Frazier and the Minnesota Vikings announced a gift of $200,000 for the Minnesota Vikings Adopt A Room at University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital. The endowed gift from the Vikings will furnish a patient’s room with today’s groundbreaking technology and comfortable amenities while securing a place for future pioneering medical advancements.

Coach Frazier, along with Vikings players and coaches, will visit patients in the hospital and unveil the room on Friday afternoon.

“Watching a child battle a serious illness is one of the most difficult challenges a family can face,” said Coach Frazier. “The Adopt A Room program allows for a better experience for the patients and their families during those challenging times. Adopting a room is a great way for the Vikings organization to support Minnesota families and show our continued commitment to children’s health.”

The Vikings will also donate $240,000 from the Vikings Children’s Fund (VCF) to the University of Minnesota Department of Pediatrics for promising research to treat and cure childhood disease. This critical funding allows researchers the opportunity to secure data and leverage national research awards. $80,000 will be directed to support the Vikings Fitness Playbook as part of a three-year commitment to directly tackle childhood obesity. The Vikings and the VCF have now donated nearly $800,000 to charitable organizations in 2011.

“We can truly transform the experience for hospitalized children by providing a healing environment that works to meet a family’s social and emotional needs as well as the complex health conditions of the child,” said Joseph P. Neglia, M.D., M.P.H, physician–in-chief, University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital and chair of the Department of Pediatrics, University of Minnesota. “We are so grateful for gifts like this from the Minnesota Vikings which help to remind our community that we can all make a direct impact on the lives of children and their families.”

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