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Transcript: Cook, Diggs, and Griffen Addressed the Media Wednesday

*Vikings Running Back Dalvin Cook *

Q: How has the transition from rookie minicamp to OTAs been?

A: It's definitely a change of speed, coming from rookie minicamp and then getting put out there with the vets. It's definitely a change of speed. These guys have been doing it for awhile. I'm having fun, learning every day. Learning how to be a pro, learning how to be a better teammate and a player also. I'm just having fun and embracing everything from the vets.

Q: Are you close to signing your contract?

A: I'm excited about it. I'm just playing football, I'll let my agent and the organization take care of it. I'm very excited, might be pretty close. I look forward to it.   

Q: It is frustrating having it drag on?

A: No, you can't let it linger with you because you've got to come out here and still play football. So that's the key right there, coming out and playing football. You've got to let the business side take care of itself, just have to come out here and play football. 

Q: Have you had a 'welcome to the NFL' moment?

A: My rookie moment was coming from with the rookies and getting thrown in there with the vets and seeing how quick the holes close and just seeing how fast the linebackers are and the secondary. You see lineman chasing you down field and you've got to stay on your horse, that was my rookie moment. Just everybody is fast, everybody is big and fast at this level. That was my change.   

Q: Still think your speed can separate from guys on Sunday's?

A: Yeah, I feel like if a guy is chasing me, I've got to do what I've got to do. That's been my mentality when I step on the field every time. Guy chasing me, got to get to the end zone, that's been my mentality. Once a guy is chasing me I just block everything out and try to beat him to that spot.

Q: What's been the biggest adjustment overall to the NFL?

A: The playbook, it definitely expanded. At Florida State we had a big enough playbook because Coach Fisher does a good job of getting you ready for stages like this and moments like this. Up here, plays get a little longer, quarterbacks doing a lot more adjusting to whatever you've got going on with the defense. Just the playbook in general, that's been the biggest difference.  

Q: Any rookie hazing or anything like that?

A: No, no rookie hazing up here. I can really say this, the vets, they really embrace the rookies. I come in and see guys that have been in the league nine years, 10 years. I'm a locker away from Terence Newman and he has conversations with me every day about ball, everything. He's been in the league 15 years now. They really embrace the rookies here and do a good job of making us feel comfortable.

Q: What does Terence talk to you about?

A: I passed by the weight room and I see him in there squatting and lifting like he's still 25. He just says have fun and enjoy it, cause it goes by real fast. He just remembers when he was coming in the league so just have fun with it, enjoy every day. It's going to go by fast once you're having fun with it.

*Vikings Wide Receiver Stefon Diggs *

Q: Have you been connecting well with Sam Bradford this offseason?

A:  It's been nice, spending a lot of time with him. Especially since we didn't have an offseason last year so going into this offseason, definitely plan on taking full advantage of it.

Q: How is your chemistry with him?

A:  Just being where you're supposed to be. I try to do my job to the best of my ability. He throws a hell of a ball, often and early. Just trying to do my job and do it to the best of my ability so I can be there when needed.

Q: What can you improve upon from year two to year three?

A:  Stay healthy. That's all that matters. I got hurt real early. I had pulled my groin in the Giants game, I had strained it the week before. Stuff like that is on me, staying healthy, staying where I need to be so I can be at tip-top shape come game time.

Q: You see those as preventable?

A: Yeah, muscles should be preventable if you take care of your body. If you break something or something like that, that's something you can't prevent. But I should be able to take good control of that other stuff.  

Q: Were you ever 100 percent after that?

A: No. But that's stuff we'll talk about now. I don't talk about it then because it didn't matter to me, I've still got to play. Noted.

Q: Does not hitting 1,000 yards last season stick in your mind?

A: Not really, I believe things are going to happen the way they're supposed to. I never sell myself short, I still go out there and do the best I can, give it everything I've got. I'm not going to sell myself short. This upcoming year, we'll see how things go.

Q: How much did you the offense own that you weren't able to hit on explosive plays and keep the defense off the field?

A: I like to take all responsibility, that's just me though. It's a team game, everybody plays their part. I know I'm one of the small pieces in the puzzle. I know if I come out and give it everything I've got, do what I know I can do and what everybody expects me to do, things will go well.  

Q: How is Teddy's progress?

A: He's one of the leaders in our locker room, so having him out here is definitely motivation to everybody. It's inspiring to see a guy back out here giving it everything he's got, rehabbing and training real hard. Seeing him out here is definitely an added inspiration.

Q: Do you expect to see a lot of changes this season with Pat Shurmur leading the offense?

A: Different coaches, similar things. You'll see what you'll see. I can't really say, I don't really call the plays or anything like that. Different scheme, you know. We'll see how everything goes. This is a full year with Coach Pat. It should be great, I'm excited.

Q: Are you taking any reps at punt returner?

A: Yeah, I'm going to be back there a little bit. We've got some great guys back there but I'll be there if needed.

Vikings Defensive End Everson Griffen

Q: How does it feel to be at the podium?

A: Oh, first time ever, it's a great feeling. Moving on up. Moving on up.  

Q: How did you process last season throughout the offseason?

A: You really just have to give it a hard look. You really have to look at the details of each and every game and be very critical of yourself. You've got to go back and fix the mistakes that you did last year and not let them happen again. It all starts now, with the foundation. You've got to set a solid foundation and you go out there and play ball. Let the past be the past.   

Q: Who are the real Vikings?

A: I don't know, we're in the process of figuring it out. Right now I feel like we're doing a good job in practice throughout these OTAs. Like I said, it all starts with that solid foundation that we're creating right now. We've just got to go out each and every day and give it our best shot.  

Q: Do you think the defense lost steam towards the end?

A: Yeah, I will say that, being straight-forward, we probably ran out of a little steam, a little momentum. That happens. I think we just had a lot on our plate as a defense. We were out there on the field a lot, to be quite honest. It's a team game and we've just got to find different areas to step it up. Special teams has got to step up, the offensive side of the ball needs to step it up a little more, defense we've got to step it up. It all works together, we're a team.

Q: Why did you decide to visit Wayzata High School?

A: So, a kid named Elliott from Wayzata High School had asked me to come out and surprise his teacher, she's like a super-fan of mine. I just took it and ran with it. I went in, told them I'd be there between 1:00-1:15, I just wanted to do something good for the kids and for the teacher and go out there and surprise them.  

Q: Did she really let them not have a final because you visited?

A: I don't know what the whole set up was, if I came if they didn't have to take a final or a test or anything like that. All I know is, it was fun. I'm going to treat this year and have fun. Take it day-by-day and step-by-step and just have fun. Lead this team and become the player that I know I can become.  

Q: You always look like you're having fun, was it a grind a bit last year?

A: It was a grind. It was a grind, me personally, I was going through a lot off the field. It is, you move past it and you move forward. You figure out who you are and you just deal with it. The best thing I can do right now is just take it day-by-day, set that solid foundation, believe in each of my teammates and just be humble. Have patience and let the game come to you.  

Q: Is it weird not having Coach Zimmer out there?

A: It is, he's our leader, he's our head coach, he's our leader. We miss him. It is different but that's why we have the coaching staff that he believes in. Coach Dre [Andre Patterson] is doing all the talking, our defensive line coach – best d-line coach in the game. They're leading us, he has the captains from last year leading the team. We have his back. We're running to the ball, doing all the right things that he wants us to do.

Q: Coach Zimmer said he wants to crank practices up a little bit, what do you think when you here that?

A: It's part of our job, this is a business. We've got to do our job at a high level. What the head man wants, he's going to get. He's going to find it. Either we do it the easy way or we do it the hard way. I like the easier way, just do it, do it like he says and then he takes care of us on the back run.   

Q: How does Sharrif Floyd look?

A: You've got to leave that up to the trainers. I have no comment on that. I don't know what's going on with him. The only thing I know is, he's rehabbing and he's doing what he has to do to get back on the field.

Q: What about mentally?

A: You've got to ask him that.

Q: How is it to see Teddy out there throwing?

A: It's wonderful, man. Teddy believes in himself, I believe in Teddy. It was an unfortunate event that went on, he's fighting back. I believe in the kid, I know he's going to come back firing on all cylinders. The best thing for him, just have faith, believe in God, give God all the glory.

Q: Has it been fun going against some new offensive lineman?

A: Absolutely. I'm a true believer that iron sharpens iron, like Coach Zimmer says. That's what we're doing out here each and every day. It's not about being physical, it's about making the guy next to you better. Competing each and every down, learning how to compete, learning how to work hard. You've got to create good habits. Once you create good habits, they stick for the long run.   

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