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Monday Morning Mailbag: Let's Talk About A Real-ish Game!

Do you have a comment or question? Send it to the Mailbag! Every Monday we'll post several comments and/or questions as part of the Monday Morning Mailbag feature. Although we can't post every comment or question, we will reply to every question submitted.

**Click here** to submit a comment or question to the mailbag. Remember to include your name and town on the email.

How do you think Trae Waynes looked in his first game of preseason? -- John San Diego, CA

Some will look at the three penalties and immediately become discouraged with Waynes' debut, but I feel there is a lot upon which to build. Often times, penalties occur because of a breakdown in technique. Waynes has been working closely with head coach Mike Zimmer and the defensive staff on technique, but sometimes young players revert to their bad habits in games and it takes a time or two of going back to practice after being penalize in games to get the hang of it. Perhaps that's what happened with Waynes on Sunday night. This was his first game, so there is a long way to go and plenty of time to learn. We saw the work Zimmer did with Xavier Rhodes last season and it's fair to expect similar results from Waynes as his career progresses.

Currently, no rookies are first in any position on our depth chart. Who has the best chance of changing that before the start of the season? -- Mitchell Harding Menomonie, WI

If the Vikings defense starts a game in a sub package with three-plus CBs, it wouldn't surprise me to see Waynes out there as a starter. After that, Stefon Diggs may make a case for the punt returner job when all is said and done, although it will be tough to pry that away from Marcus Sherels.

How much time does it take to build chemistry between a QB and a RB? Will having no preseason game reps affect AP and Teddy in the regular season? -- James Maple Grove, MN

If Peterson does indeed see no preseason reps, I still will not be concerned about the chemistry between him and Bridgewater or any part of the offensive line. Certainly there is something to be said for becoming accustomed to game speed as opposed to practice speed, but all of the work Peterson and the rest of the offense has put in during the offseason program and training camp will do more for developing that chemistry than not playing at all in the preseason will do in preventing the chemistry from forming. Both Zimmer and offensive coordinator Norv Turner understand how to build a team as well as the importance of chemistry, and if they felt that not playing Peterson in the preseason would hurt the chemistry, then I think they would play Peterson.

As of right now, how would you rate our offensive line? -- Isias Hampton

I would rank them as a position group that will be a road-grading run blocking unit with the best RB in the NFL lining up behind them. I would also say it's a group whose pass protection has a good chance to improve dramatically in 2015. The offensive line is also a group that is dealing with a couple injuries at the moment and that needs to keep working to solidify the starter at RG and then identify which players will be kept to build up the depth. While there is some uncertainty as to which players will fulfill which roles at this point, the good news is that there are a lot of talented players in the group and it could just be a matter of the coaches and scouts identifying the right combination. I am optimistic the Vikings OL can be a quality group, and if the group plays well then the sky is the limit for this offense.

I have not heard much of Adam Thielen this offseason and beginning of camp, but a lot of Stefon Diggs. How is Adam doing this year and do you believe he will make the 53-man roster? It's hard not to root for the home town kid! -- Blake Carlson

Thielen had a great offseason and he's been dynamite in training camp. I also thought he played well in Sunday night's preseason debut. Because he can contribute in so many different ways, he's a tough player to cut. I'm not going to make any predictions as to whether he makes the final 53-man roster or not because it's too early for that and it's not my call anyway, but I will say he's a tough player to cut because of all he can do for the team in addition to the fact that he's a great person with a good work ethic who really cares about the game, his teammates and his coaches.

When I went to 2015 Verizon Vikings Training Camp on August 3rd, I had a really fun time. Not only at practice but at the autograph zone, as well. I want to thank all the players who signed autographs for me, including Adrian Peterson (who also took a picture with me), Jerick McKinnon, Matt Asiata, Kyle Rudolph, Cordarrelle Patterson, Mike Wallace, Jarius Wright, Blair Walsh, and many others. Also, I want to give a special thanks to Specials Teams Coordinator Mike Priefer for taking a picture with me as well since I am going to be minoring in Athletic Coaching at Bethel University. Overall, I had a great time and on behalf of all of us Vikings fans out there, we want to thank the Vikings organization and the Wilf family for everything they've done to make the best fan experience possible in every area. I can't wait to see what this season has in store for us. I think it's going to be a great season. SKOL! -- Levi Bauer Eagan MN

I love receiving emails like this. Thanks, Levi, and the thousands of other Vikings fans who've been to Mankato so far during training camp, for taking the time to come and support the team. And thank you to those of you who come to as a way to stay connected with the team. I just returned from Canton, Ohio, where I was since Thursday morning for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2015 enshrinement festivities, and one of my favorite parts of that trip every time I go is meeting fans who travel from all over the country to support the team and the Vikings enshrine. The Vikings do truly have a great and passionate fan base.

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