Following Thursday's walk-through (held indoors because of weather), Teddy Bridgewater spoke with reporters about preparations for the Hall of Fame Game.
Here are five key topics Bridgewater discussed:
1) Digging Diggs:Bridgewater hasn't had as many reps with rookie receiver Stefon Diggs as he has with the first-team targets, but the quarterback is liking what he's seeing. Asked what he likes most about Diggs, Bridgewater said, "I love that he remembers his mistakes more than his good plays. You make a good play and everyone is going to pat you on your back and tell you how good you're doing, but to be able to process those bad plays, learn from them, and then not make the same mistake twice, that's what I love about him."
Bridgewater said Diggs has joined receivers in taking pride in running precise routes that equals the pride the quarterback's place on accuracy.
2) Shared responsibility: A great quality Bridgewater has shown is the willingness to share credit and shoulder blame. Opponents sacked Bridgewater 39 times last season, but he said part of that rested on him. He said he has confidence in "a new and improved offensive line."
"A lot of those sacks last year, I take credit in that," Bridgewater said. "I could have gotten rid of the ball much faster, made faster decisions. Like I said, this is a new team this year, nothing in this league stays the same. We're going to do some things differently to avoid some of those sacks this year."
3) Interception review: The defense picked off a pair of passes — one by Audie Cole and one by Xavier Rhodes — from Bridgewater during two-minute drills Tuesday night. Bridgewater didn't mince words in his critique.
"The first one was just awful, bad ball placement," Bridgewater said. "I probably should have just thrown the ball to the running back on the swing route, but it happens. It can be avoided. I'd rather it happen out there on the practice field than during the season. Then, the second one, in the two-minute situation, the ball had to go to the end zone. I just tried to lay it out there and give my guy a chance, but Xavier Rhodes, he's a long guy, so you have to be very accurate when you're throwing on his side of the field."
4) Minding the A gaps:When veteran center John Sullivan was excused to leave camp this week to be with his wife for the birth of their first child, an opportunity opened for Zac Kerin, who spent all of 2014 on the Vikings practice squad, to take reps with the first team. Bridgewater said Kerin "did a great job" of filling in for Sullivan in the A gaps between Kerin and the Vikings left and right guards.
"To be able to come in for a guy like John Sullivan, you have to be on top of your game," Bridgewater said. "Sully is a very smart guy, he's making calls in the run game and everything like that, so Zac did a great job of just stepping in for him."
5) Live action almost here:Last Sunday was the last without NFL football until February. The Vikings are set to open the preseason against the Steelers this Sunday in the Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio. Bridgewater said he doesn't yet know how many snaps he'll see. He said the team will benefit from preparing for a game and having "game-like situations," even though the Vikings are unlikely to be too exotic on offense or defense. Former Vikings and Steelers defensive back Tyrone Carter, however, told Voice of the Vikings Paul Allen and analyst Pete Bercich on KFAN's 9 to Noon show that he thinks the Steelers will bring blitzes.
Bridgewater said it's helpful for the team to get back to a full week of game planning, and he's excited to build off his first season.
"I know for me, going into my second year, it's going to be very helpful to get to see all of our hard work in training camp pay off out there on Sunday," Bridgewater said. "I can't wait to get out there."