During a busy weekend at Winter Park carving out the 53-man roster, the Vikings decided to bring back a familiar name to the Twin Cities. Former Gopher quarterback and Browns tight end MarQueis Gray was claimed via waivers and is now back in same place that helped him launch to NFL status.
FOX Sports North Brian Hall breaks down the Gray's return to Minnesota here:
The former Gophers quarterback, now a tight end, will get the chance to return to campus and TCF Bank Stadium with the *Minnesota Vikings, who claimed him on waivers from the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.*
Gray has lived in the Twin Cities with his family since he finished his senior season with the university in 2012. His nomadic NFL journey after going undrafted in 2013 has included stops in San Francisco and Cleveland, but he hopes to settle in back in Minnesota.
"My family been living here and they just came up last season for Cleveland, but they've been living here ever since," Gray said Monday. "Now we finally only got one house to worry about. So that's good."
Gray, 24, has gone from quarterback and receiver with the Gophers to a tight end with Cleveland, which resulted in his eventual landing with the Vikings. Minnesota was looking for a third tight end on the roster and offensive coordinator Norv Turner had worked with Gray last season as the Browns' offensive coordinator.
"I believe that he's trusting me a lot to be here, obviously, because he wants me to be here," Gray said. "So I just got to make sure I do my part and uphold all the great things he's said about me."
Whether or not Gray plays this Sunday against the Rams is unknown, but his presence definitely helps out with the needed tight end depth as we start the 2014 regular season.
Vikings nose tackle Linval Joseph good to go for opener
Brian Murphy of the Pioneer Press chatted with Vikings defensive tackle Linval Joseph during yesterday's open locker room session where Joseph said he's good to go for Sunday's contest at St.Louis:
*"Everything feels good," Joseph said. "I'm glad to be back. Every day's better. I'm ready to go on Sunday." *
*Joseph was sidelined three weeks after being shot during an Aug. 9 shooting at a Minneapolis nightclub, a bystander struck in the leg during what police said was a gang-related spree. *
*Coach Mike Zimmer said Joseph has not lost a step in conditioning or his technique. Defensive end Brian Robison concurred. *
*"He looks like he hasn't missed a beat," Robison said. "It's awesome to get him back and have that presence in the middle. Hopefully, he'll do a lot of good things for us Sunday." *
*Joseph was Minnesota's highest-profile, free-agent acquisition. He signed a five-year, $31.5 million contract in March to be a run stopper following the departures of Letroy Guion and Kevin Williams. *
Joseph, who serves as an important cog to Zimmer's defense, should play a huge role come Sunday when the Shaun Hill and the Rams offense lines up across from the Vikings new defense.
- Via Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press, Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen is not taking anything for granted.
- Star Tribune columnist Chip Scoggins pegs the Vikings as an 8-8 team.
- And just a reminder, five more days until game day.