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3 Observations: Vikings Use Pair of 1st-Team O-Line Combos

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — The Vikings wrapped up their final preseason practice of the year Tuesday by practicing for approximately 90 minutes at Winter Park.

Minnesota practiced in helmets, shoulder pads and shorts. The Vikings are on a short week as they prepare to finish their preseason slate at 7 p.m. Thursday against Miami.

The Vikings won two of their first three preseason games, rallying for a 32-31 victory Sunday against the 49ers by scoring a touchdown and getting a walk-off 2-point conversion .

Here are three observations from Tuesday's session:

1. Looking for the best five

The Vikings mixed up their first-team offensive line combinations Tuesday, two days after quarterback Sam Bradford was sacked three times in the first half against San Francisco.

Minnesota opened practice by having Riley Reiff at left tackle, Alex Boone at left guard, Nick Easton at center, Joe Berger at right guard and Mike Remmers at right tackle.

While that was the same unit that started against the 49ers, the Vikings switched things up later in practice.

Reiff, Boone and Remmers stayed in their original spots, but Pat Elflein jumped in at center while Easton moved to right guard.

2. Combos in coverage

The Vikings defense spent a good portion of Tuesday's practice focusing on an area they struggled with two days before.

Pass coverage was a point of emphasis for Minnesota as the Vikings opened practice by working together in various coverages to make sure all opposing receivers were blanketed.

Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer stepped in later in practice and played the role of defensive back, giving out pointers on schemes while illustrating and vocalizing concepts to his players.

Minnesota gave up 354 passing yards and three touchdowns against the 49ers.including passes of 46 and 24 yards and a short throw that turned into an 87-yard catch-and run.

3. Thielen never stops

Adam Thielen has more than established himself as a starter for the Vikings, but the former undrafted walk-on's work ethic hasn't waned.

Although Thielen isn't expected to play in the preseason finale for the third straight year, the wide receiver took advantage of the Vikings only practice of the week by making a pair of athletic catches on Tuesday.

Thielen showed off his aerial moves early in practice when he weaved through traffic and leapt to catch a pass in front of Vikings safety Harrison Smith.

The Minnesota native later made a sliding grab on a low throw in a 7-on-7 drill amidst a crowd of defenders.

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