On the fourth day, the Vikings rested.
After opening their Organized Team Activity schedule on Tuesday and completing three of the 10 by Thursday afternoon, the Vikings have Friday off from on-field activity and will spend the weekend recharging for three more OTAs next week.
Here are five things we learned about the Vikings during the three days of OTAs…
1. Everyone is impressed with Mike Wallace
New, but not unnoticed. Vikings WR Mike Wallace has made a quick impression on his coaches and teammates.
"I know he's a dynamic receiver and he's been doing a great job of working, he's a guy that works very, very hard," Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said. "He's been catching the ball well. He's been learning the playbook. All of these things are all different, but he's looked good."
Said offensive coordinator Norv Turner: "Mike looks really fast. I don't know if he needs a double move (to create separation from defenders). He's getting a feel for our offense. He's a very smart guy."
Added NFL Network's Jeff Darlington, who lives in south Florida and has covered Wallace for all of his NFL career: "I can tell you that the speed is the real deal. This guy is as fast as advertised."
The commentary from those three is notable. Zimmer isn't one to use hyperbole or heap praise on someone who doesn't deserve it, Turner has worked with outstanding receivers his whole career, and Darlington has no reason to be anything but objective as he reports for a national media outlet.
It may only be three practices, but so far so good for Wallace as he tries to assimilate into a new team.
2. Teddy is excited to have a healthy Kyle Rudolph in the fold
QB Teddy Bridgewater was also asked to comment on Wallace's addition to the offense. While the second-year signal caller was bullish on his new speedy pass catcher, he shifted the praise to a returning member of the offense.
"He's a great addition to the team," Bridgewater said of Wallace. "I'll tell you, what's even a better addition, is having Kyle Rudolph back healthy. He's like a whole new player on the team. We're glad to have Mike, he's going to add some speed to that room and all of those guys are going to continue to elevate their games."
A healthy Rudolph is a great thing. The last time he played in all 16 games was the same season he caught nine touchdowns to help lead the Vikings to the playoffs and then earned MVP honors at the Pro Bowl.
3. Waynes in slot and outside
When it comes to playing time, the Vikings may or may not slowly work Trae Waynes into the CB rotation. For now, though, one thing the Vikings aren't taking slowly is the process of teaching him the defense and the various positions he may play within it.
"He's obviously very talented," Zimmer said. "He's doing a good job. We're trying to teach him the nickel and corner. He's got work to do, like all young guys do, like all of the guys do. He shows flashes of really good stuff."
No need to put the cart before the horse here. Where Waynes winds up playing primarily and how much he plays in games is still a work in process, but that Zimmer, defensive coordinator George Edwards and secondary coach Jerry Gray are throwing so much at him so early is only a good sign.
4. There's been a changing of the guards
Since 2012, the Vikings have had continuity along the offensive line. Now, though, the group is experiencing a bit of a remodel, all while maintaining its core. John Sullivan is a stalwart at C and the line will continue to be bookended by talented OTs Matt Kalil and Phil Loadholt. But there's a change at G, at least in the first three OTAs, as Brandon Fusco shifted from the spot he's occupied since being drafted (RG) over to LG. Fourth-round rookie TJ Clemmings has been working at RG.
Inserting Clemmings at RG will smooth his transition to the NFL because he played RT at Pittsburgh, while moving to Fusco to LG presents him with the challenge of switching to the other side of the ball but it also gives the Vikings a chance to solidify the entire left side by teaming him with Kalil.
5. Zimmer is not afraid to practice in the rain
There's a lot to love about Zimmer. Vikings fans are drawn to him because of his no-nonsense, stoic nature, which reminds many of legendary coach Bud Grant. Players like him because he hold everyone, regardless of locker room or roster status, accountable and they always feel they know where they stand with him.
OTA No. 1 on Tuesday spoke to part of the reason why fans are as pro-Zimmer as they are. The skies opened up and down poured on Winter Park, but Zimmer did not lead his team into the comfortable and dry confines of the field house. The Vikings stayed outside, took extra caution to avoid injury, and practiced playing in the rain.
"Yesterday we went out and it was a monsoon out here, but it was good for us to get out, good character builder," Zimmer said on Wednesday.
Hey, they don't call NFL games because of rain, so why not practice in it when given the opportunity?