Safety First Continued: Hard-Hitting Returning Starter

Posted by Mike Wobschall on August 16, 2012 – 5:50 pm

Mistral Raymond: He’s Got The Look
Harrison Smith: Progression Continues
Jamarca Sanford: Hard-Hitting Returning Starter

Our daily look at the competition for starting safety positions continues today with analysis of Jamarca Sanford.

Jamarca Sanford is one of the Vikings best  special teams players, and now he has a chance to emerge as a playmaker on the Vikings defense, too.

No player in the vaunted Southeastern Conference (SEC) accumulated more tackles than Sanford during his four seasons at Ole Miss. The Vikings noticed Sanford’s penchant for finding the ball-carrier and selected him with a seventh-round pick in the 2009 NFL Draft. Sanford immediately became a standout special teams contributor and is now working to become a playmaker on the Vikings defense as well.

Sanford is actually a returning starter in the Vikings defense, as he started 15 games at safety a year ago. But improvement is the name of the game for the Vikings secondary in 2012, and Sanford is determined to be a part of the equation.

The area of Sanford’s game the team is looking to improve is his ability in coverage.

“As I mentioned before with Jamarca, we have to be able to see him make some plays on the ball down the field,” Vikings Head Coach Leslie Frazier said. “That is something we want to see him improve on and he will get enough turns here in camp and in the preseason to see if that is happening.”

Frazier also said Sanford’s teammates feed off of his passion for the game.

“He is one of those guys who plays at a high level all the time,” Frazier said. “You can always hear him chirping and talking, and the players kind of feed off of that. We all like that energy that he brings.”

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Vikings Adopt NFL’s New Policy; Decision Puts Team In Better Position To Have Home Games Locally Televised

Posted by Mike Wobschall on August 16, 2012 – 11:29 am

This offseason, NFL owners voted on a new policy that ultimately gives each team the option to lower its percentage of tickets that must be sold in order to prevent a home game from being blacked out on local television. For the first time, NFL teams are allowed flexibility to select a percentage anywhere between the typical 100% down to 85% of capacity. By lowering the ticket manifest, teams are not lowering the number of seats they can sell or the number of fans who can attend home games; rather, the decision only lowers the tickets that must be sold to allow a game to be on local TV.

In an effort to ensure as many fans as possible can experience Vikings football, the team will take advantage of the league’s new policy. The Vikings will reduce the Mall of America ticket manifest to 90% capacity, a reduction of approximately 6,000 seats.

This decision is in line with many of the Vikings decisions that are in the best interests of our fans. By reducing the ticket manifest, the Vikings are in a better position to achieve the team’s goal of reaching as many Vikings fans as possible and have all 2012 home games locally televised.

“It’s important for the Vikings to take advantage of a new policy that benefits our fans and helps us achieve our goal of having our games televised throughout Minnesota,” said Vikings Vice President of Sales and Marketing and Chief Marketing Officer Steve LaCroix. “Our focus remains on selling every seat in Mall of America Field, and we will continue to work hard to achieve that. This flexibility, however, puts us in a better position to have our home games locally televised.”

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Vikings Join “Text 2 Give” Campaign To Support Flood Victims

Posted by Mike Wobschall on August 16, 2012 – 9:26 am

In an effort to raise awareness and provide support to summer flood victims in northeastern Minnesota, the Vikings are partnering with several Northland communities, as well as the United Way of Greater Duluth, on a “Text 2 Give” campaign.

Starting today, Vikings fans have the opportunity to help fellow Minnesotans with a $5 donation by texting “FLOOD12” to 20222. Proceeds from the campaign will go to the Twin Ports Region Long-Term Flood Relief Fund, a regional fund designed to help those affected by the Northland flash floods last June.

In addition to the “Text 2 Give” campaign, the Vikings will also make a $10,000 donation to the fund during Friday night’s Vikings-Bills preseason game. Team owners Zygi and Mark Wilf will present a check to mayors Don Ness (Duluth), Bruce Ahlgren (Cloquet), Jason Goodwin (Barnum), and Ted Shaw (Moose Lake).

“Thousands of Minnesotans were impacted by the massive flooding this summer,” said Mark Wilf. “It is critical for us as an organization to use our platform to raise awareness about this disaster and support these families.”

About the Twin Ports Region Long-Term Flood Relief Fund:
The Twin Ports Region Long-Term Flood Relief Fund is assisting Minnesotans affected in the following areas: Superior/Douglas County, Duluth/St. Louis County, Carlton County (including Fond du Lac Reservation), Aitkin County, Pine County and Lake County. Every dollar donated to the fund is designated to victims across the region; administrative fees are being covered by local governments, United Ways, foundations and other agencies. While the initial goal of the fund was to raise $1 million, the fund will need to raise several million dollars to meet the needs of all those affected.

For more information, visit

The “Text 2 Give” campaign is sponsored by Barr. 

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