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Players React to Norv Turner's Resignation

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. –The news of **Norv Turner’s resignation** Wednesday morning came as a shock to everyone.

Vikings players arrived at the practice facility a couple of hours after the announcement, and most weren't aware of the news until they arrived.

Both Kyle Rudolph and Sam Bradford received notifications during their morning commute.

"My wife actually called me," Bradford told Twin Cities media members during his podium session. "She had, I guess, gotten an alert on her phone from one of the media outlets. I was pulling into work and found out."

It was a confusing start to the day, but players were clear about the impact Turner had on the team during his two-plus seasons in Minnesota.

Running back Jerick McKinnon, who's spent all his time with the Vikings under Turner, said he learned a lot from the long-time coach about what it takes to have a career in the NFL.

"It's a long season, and things don't go your way all the time," McKinnon said of what Turner instilled in him. "Everything that you do as a player throughout the season, whether it's injuries, whether it's mental things or whatnot, you just have to find a way to do your best every week and get past those things and find a way to perform."

Added McKinnon: "He definitely taught me a lot in my first three years, and it's been a pleasure working with him."

Rudolph echoed McKinnon's sentiments, calling it an honor to work under Turner.

"He has a lot of knowledge of this game and a lot of knowledge of my position," Rudolph said. "He's definitely brought my game to a level that it wasn't before he got here, and I'm appreciative of that."

Bradford was with Turner for a much shorter stint than were the majority of his teammates, but he said nonetheless that he gleaned a lot in the seven weeks he's spent in Minnesota's offense.

Bradford, who said he spent time in Turner's office Tuesday afternoon and was caught completely off guard by his resignation the following morning, said that Turner was "awesome" about helping Bradford understand the passing game schematically.

"I really enjoyed working with Norv," Bradford said. "Obviously, he's seen a lot of football. He's been around a long time.

"It was great every day just watching practice tape with him," Bradford continued. "Getting to hear his thoughts about what went on at practice."

Players Wednesday morning seemed to maintain the same level of resiliency that they have all season. While noticeably difficult to say goodbye to a well-respected member of their coaching staff, the Vikings are simultaneously keeping to their "next man up" mentality that has been an unofficial theme of the season.

A number of players expressed an equal amount of respect – and faith – in tight ends coach Pat Shurmur, who was promoted to interim offensive coordinator following Turner's resignation.

"We believe in Coach Pat, so we know that we're going to get things right and get things going again. The main focus is getting back on track and getting some wins," McKinnon said. "We can't let something like this distract us. We just have to get back on track."

Bradford also hopes to help right the ship, and he's grateful that, of the entire Vikings organization, he has the most experience with Shurmur. Bradford played under Shurmur during his time as offensive coordinator for both St. Louis and Philadelphia.

"I've always enjoyed working with Pat, I think he's a great football mind," Bradford said. "Really just looking forward to sitting down and talking to him and trying to figure out the direction in which we're going to go."

When asked if he believes Shurmur will significantly shake up the offense, Bradford said he didn't know.

"I think that no matter what the scheme is, we have to go out there and we have to execute," Bradford said. "We have to be better than what we have the last couple weeks."

Although Shurmur was new to Minnesota's coaching staff for the 2016 season, Rudolph has spent a considerable amount of time with Shurmur in the tight ends room and said he's confident that the team will "rally around" him as he takes over as offensive coordinator.

Rudolph said he expects the transition to be fairly smooth.

"He knows what we do well, he knows what we like to do as an offense, and he has a feel for how we play," Rudolph said. "I imagine we'll kind of just get this thing rolling, and he just wants to continue doing the things we've been doing and just get back to [those]."  

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