EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — With the Vikings in the midst of organized team activity (OTA) practices, wide receiver Adam Thielen said he's simply focused on letting plays come to him rather than forcing them.
Thielen showed exactly what those words meant Tuesday as the Minnesota native hauled in a pair of touchdown catches.
The 6-foot-2 Thielen evaded multiple defenders on his first score as he found the ball at its high point on a 30-yard pass down the middle from quarterback Taylor Heinicke.
Thielen later made a sliding grab in the corner of the end zone on a pass from quarterback Shaun Hill.
"If the ball is in the air, then you have to go get it," Thielen said.
The third-year wide receiver, who is also a special teams standout, said the offense wasn't necessarily looking for the home run ball. Instead, he said the Vikings offense uses a patient approach to move the chains.
"I think it's kind of what the defense gives us," Thielen said. "Our quarterbacks are doing a good job, and our coaches are emphasizing that if the defense gives you a deep ball, then let's take a shot.
"If not, we'll throw underneath and pick them apart that way," he added.
Thielen said he's noticed that the competitive juices have been flowing more now that the Vikings are into their second week of OTA practices.
Thielen, who had 12 catches for 144 yards last season, said Minnesota's work ethic stems from Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer.
"(We want to) come in here every day and get better individually and as a team," Thielen said. "We have to build on what we did last year, we can't just stay complacent.
"We can't do anything off of last year," he added. "(Zimmer) wants to treat every day like a new day and make sure we come out here and get better."
Tuesday's top plays
Besides Thielen's pair of touchdown grabs, wide receiver Stefon Diggs also had a leaping grab at the goal line on a pass from Heinicke.
Here's a look at other highlights from Tuesday's practice:
— Kicker Blair Walsh drilled a pair of 54-yard field goals, kicking from the damp grass at Winter Park.
— Rookie wide receiver Laquon Treadwell showed off strong hands when he snagged a pass with cornerback Tre Roberson in coverage.
— Linebacker Edmond Robinson picked off a tipped Teddy Bridgewater pass. Defensive end Everson Griffen applied heavy pressure in the pocket.
— Defensive end Danielle Hunter blew up a running play by pouring into the backfield with a powerful move.
— Rookie safety Jayron Kearse likely would have had a sack on a blitz.
View photos of Vikings new DT Bruce Gaston from his days with the Bears, Packers, Cardinals, Patriots and at Purdue.
A new addition
The Vikings made a roster move Tuesday as they signed defensive tackle Bruce Gaston and place defensive end B.J. DuBose on the waived/injured list.
Gaston has been with six teams, including the Packers and Bears, since being signed by Arizona as an undrafted free agent out of Purdue in 2014.
He has 11 tackles and a sack in nine career games.