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Bradford's Connections with Shurmur Could Help Transition

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. –Sam Bradford has only been with the Vikings offense for seven weeks, but he's been with Pat Shurmur for a lot longer.

The news of Norv Turner's resignation caught Bradford **as off guard as anyone Wednesday**. For Bradford, however, the promotion of Shurmur – who joined Minnesota this season as its tight ends coach – to interim offensive coordinator could be a positive thing.

Shurmur was Bradford's offensive coordinator in both St. Louis (2010) and last season in Philadelphia. In those two seasons, Bradford was 700-of-1,122 passing (62.4), had an average passer rating of 81.5 and threw for 37 touchdowns. He referred to Shurmur as a "great football mind," and both quarterback and coach have said their relationship is a positive one.

"[I'm] just looking forward to sitting down and talking to him and trying to figure out the direction in which we're going to go," Bradford said. "I think that no matter what the scheme is, we have to go out there and we have to execute. We have to be better than what we have the last couple weeks."

Including Turner, Bradford has played under four different offensive coordinators. Shurmur was the first.

"With Pat being the one who kind of brought me up in this league and coached me as a rookie, I think I learned a lot about the game from [him]," Bradford said. "Obviously, I think he had a vision early on in my career."

Bradford said he's looking forward to an opportunity to work in a similar capacity with Shurmur now.

According to Bradford, some of the current offense is similar to what he's run with Shurmur in the past, from the up-tempo pace used with the Eagles to similar pass concepts from his time with the Eagles.

As surprised as Bradford was to hear the news of Turner's resignation, he emphasized the fluidity of the NFL and importance of being able to adapt. For the quarterback who hadn't worn a purple jersey until early September and went through a variety of coaching changes prior to Minnesota, it's a familiar mentality.

"Things can change in a minute in this league," Bradford said. "It's a week-to-week business, it's a week-to-week league. We know that we have to go out there and prove ourselves.

"You can't take anything for granted," Bradford continued. "I think this week we have to get back to what we were doing well earlier in the year and get back on track."

Despite the difficult circumstances of parting with a well-respected coach in Turner, Bradford said the move can be a positive opportunity for the team.

"Hopefully it'll be something that the guys will rally around," Bradford said. "Obviously, I love Pat. I'm going to support him. I'm going to give him everything that I have."

Zimmer had procedure Tuesday for torn retina

Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer underwent a minor medical procedure Tuesday morning for a torn retina in his right eye.

Zimmer said he scratched his eye during Monday night's loss to the Bears.

"The doctors, after the game, they checked and had me get in for an appointment, and I found out that I had a torn retina," Zimmer said. "Dr. Scott Sanderson and Dr. David Williams performed a procedure on my eye, fortunately.

"They said if you don't take care of those things that you have a possibility of going blind," he added.

Zimmer said the condition didn't interfere with studying the Detroit Lions heading into Sunday's noon (CT) game at U.S. Bank Stadium.

"I've been watching film with one eye all week," Zimmer said. "I've had to wear reading glasses, too, so I can write down because the one eye I can't see out of when I write.

"Fortunately, it's probably a good thing I scratched my eye during the game otherwise I may not have caught it in time," he added. "But, hopefully everything will be all right."

Offensive line looking to improve

In his second game – and first start – for the Vikings at Chicago Monday night, Jake Long said he felt a little better about his performance but has a long way to go.

"I feel better and better as I get more time," Long said Wednesday. "It [wasn't] good enough; I still need to work on some things. And I will – keep working hard in practice, keep getting better."

According to Long, the offensive linemen together know they need to improve.

"We do some good things and then we do some bad things, and we just need to be more consistent, keep Sam upright more," Long said.

Brandon Fusco echoed that the unit needs to improve, placing blame on himself for "not playing well enough" at Chicago and losing too many 1-on-1 battles at the line. 

"I physically just got beat," Fusco said. "I got ran over a couple of times, and that's on me."

Added Fusco: "We all just need to step up, man up, and protect these guys on Sunday," Fusco said.

Injury reports

The Vikings and Lions have released their first official injury reports of the week, the two teams combining for 24 players on the report.

For the Vikings: Alex Boone (concussion/shoulder/knee), Eric Kendricks (concussion), Tom Johnson (concussion), Zac Kerin (hand), Jerick McKinnon (ankle) and Sharrif Floyd (knee) did not participate. Xavier Rhodes (calf), Captain Munnerlyn (foot), Anthony Barr (groin), Marcus Sherels (wrist) and Andrew Sendejo (ankle) were limited. Audie Cole (finger), Jarius Wright (ankle) and MyCole Pruitt (knee) fully participated.

For the Lions: DeAndre Levy (knee/quad) and Riley Reiff (illness) did not participate. Ezekiel Ansah (ankle), Adairius Barnes (hamstring), Taylor Decker (ribs), Marvin Jones (foot), Haloti Ngata (shoulder), Theo Riddick (ankle) and Darius Slay (hamstring) were limited. Corey Robinson (ankle) fully participated.

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