Access Vikings

Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.



Free Agency Tracker '15: Vikings finally get into the signing game


We’re tracking all things Purple, starting with what’s already happened and projecting what needs to happen as the Vikings work their way through free agency and the rest of the offseason.

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NFL announces full draft order for 2015 NFL draft

Posted by: Matt Vensel Updated March 24th at 10:47pm 297453491

The NFL this afternoon released the draft order for next month’s NFL draft, so we now know when the Vikings will make their — as of right now — seven total selections.

The Vikings have no sixth-round pick and two seventh-rounders after sending quarterback Matt Cassel to the Bills and acquiring receiver Mike Wallace from the Dolphins in two separate trades.

They sent their original fifth-round pick to the Dolphins in the Wallace deal and kept the fifth-round pick, which originally belonged to the Buccaneers, they received in the Cassel trade. That selection is 12 spots before their original pick, so they kept the better of the two fifth-rounders.

Anyway, here are the seven 2015 draft picks that the Vikings currently have to work with:

— 11th overall (first round)

— 45th overall (second round)

— 76th overall (third round)

— 110th overall (fourth round)

— 137th overall (fifth round)

— 228th overall (seventh round)

— 232nd overall (seventh round)

Vikings sign safety Taylor Mays

Posted by: Chris Miller Updated March 24th at 5:43pm 297443131

Free-agent safety Taylor Mays has agreed to a one-year deal with the Vikings, an NFL source confirmed.

In five NFL seasons with two teams, Mays made 98 tackles, recorded one sack and forced one fumble. The 27-year-old has broken up six passes and is still looking for his first NFL interception.

Originally a second-round pick of the 49ers, he joined current Vikings coach Mike Zimmer, then Cincinnati’s defensive coordinator, and the Bengals in 2011 and played 50 games for the team over the past four seasons. Mays was mostly a backup, but when Zimmer was in Cincinnati, he used Mays in a hybrid safety-linebacker role in some of his sub packages.

Casey Matthews signs with Vikings

Posted by: Chris Miller Updated March 24th at 6:27pm 297436881

Free agent linebacker Casey Matthews signed with the Vikings today, the team announced.

Matthews, the brother of Packers All-Pro linebacker Clay Matthews, was taken by the Eagles in the fourth round of the NFL draft in 2011 out of Oregon.

Matthews, 26, started 11 games for the Eagles last season, replacing an injured DeMeco Ryans at inside linebacker. He played four years in Philadelphia, playing in 16 games each season, including a lot of special teams duty. He had 2.5 sacks in that time.

Here’s a phillynews.com profile of Matthews from last season.

Agent: 'I don’t think it’s in Adrian’s best interest to play in Minnesota'

Posted by: Chris Miller Updated March 24th at 3:31pm 297309751

The needle on the Adrian Peterson situation didn’t move much Monday at the NFL owners meetings in Phoenix, but there were comments from both sides, so here’s a quick update.

Peterson’s agent, Ben Dogra, told reporters, including ESPN’s Kevin Seifert, “I don’t think it’s in Adrian’s best interest to play in Minnesota. Why would it be?” Seifert reported Dogra did not elaborate.

Rick Spielman, the Vikings general manager, reiterated to reporters that “Adrian’s a member of our football team. He is under contract with us, and we are focused on the 2015 season and expect Adrian to be a part of that.” The USA Today story on Spielman’s comments is here.

USA Today’s Tom Pelissero talked to Vikings co-owner Mark Wilf, who said Peterson is “an important part of the Minnesota Vikings and we look forward to him being part of our team in 2015.”

Peterson is under contract to the Vikings through 2017.

B. Todd Jones lands job with NFL

Posted by: Chris Miller Updated March 23rd at 12:34pm 297255761

B. Todd Jones, formerly U.S. attorney for Minnesota, had a checkered two years with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives before resigning last week amid rumors he was taking a job with the NFL.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said today Jones would join the league as Special Counsel for Conduct.

Jones graduated from Macalester in 1979 and the University of Minnesota Law School in 1983.  A native of Cincinnati, he served as a judge advocate in the Marines after he passed the bar.

Jones’ short history with ATF can be seen here and here.

Lisa Friel, who had been working with the league on discipline issues, will be named NFL special counsel for investigations.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Goodell decided to split the duties of an NFL conduct officer between Jones and Friel.

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Atlanta 7 FINAL
Pittsburgh 5
Miami 5 FINAL
St. Louis 3
Baltimore - LP: K. Gausman 4 FINAL
Detroit - WP: J. Nathan 6
Minnesota 4 FINAL
Boston 5
NY Yankees 5 FINAL
Tampa Bay 6
Philadelphia 1 FINAL
Toronto 4
Cincinnati 13 FINAL
Cleveland 2
Los Angeles 9 FINAL
Chicago WSox 6
Kansas City 3 FINAL
Seattle 0
Seattle 1 FINAL
Milwaukee 15
San Diego 3 FINAL
Arizona 3
NY Mets 8 FINAL
Washington 3
LA Angels 8 FINAL
Chicago Cubs 4
Colorado 3 FINAL
Texas 6
Oakland 6 FINAL
San Francisco 4
Indiana 107 FINAL
Milwaukee 111
Pittsburgh 2 FINAL
Carolina 5
New Jersey 2 FINAL(OT)
Washington 3
Los Angeles 3 FINAL
NY Islanders 2
Arizona 4 FINAL(OT)
Buffalo 3
Anaheim 3 FINAL(OT)
Boston 2
Nashville 3 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
San Jose 6 FINAL
Detroit 4
NY Rangers 5 FINAL
Ottawa 1
Florida 4 FINAL
Toronto 1
Montreal 2 FINAL
Winnipeg 5
Colorado 4 FINAL
Vancouver 1
Wichita State 70 FINAL
Notre Dame 81
North Carolina 72 FINAL
Wisconsin 79
Evansville 89 FINAL
Louisiana 82
West Virginia 39 FINAL
Kentucky 78
Xavier 60 FINAL
Arizona 68
St Johns 55 FINAL
Villanova 63
NC State 79 FINAL
Temple 80
Missouri 55 FINAL
Michigan 65
Oral Roberts 64 FINAL
Louisiana 65
Duquesne 39 FINAL
West Virginia 60
Ole Miss 70 FINAL
Middle Tennessee 82
Northern Colorado 60 FINAL
UCLA 74
St Marys-CA 77 FINAL
Sacramento St 69

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