*Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer *
Q: What do you want to get out of this fourth preseason game?
A: I want these young guys that have the opportunity to come out here and make the club, and come out and perform. There are a lot of guys with jobs on the line. We expect them to go out and play well.
Q: In the past, how much has this game played a role in making decisions?
A: Well it has. Obviously, it's a whole body of work, but there's been guys that have done a nice job in practices and stuff that get to the final game and they play well and they end up making the team.
Q: Do you see that change a little bit of the intensity or urgency for the guys on the field?
A: I don't think it changes it all. I think all of these guys are going to come out and play hard and anticipate. Most of them know they are fighting for jobs now so the intensity and everything like that won't change one bit.
Q: What is the biggest benefit to the way the quarterback room is structured?
A: Obviously, the starter is important. But the backup is a guy you want to be supportive of the starter, help him see things on the sideline. Also, if he gets hurt, he has to be able to go in there and function. Typically, you keep another guy so that if things go bad during the season, you have a guy who understands your system and you don't have to try to get him ready in a week.
Q: Have you seen any sign of aging at all with Terence Newman and how has his preseason been?
A: Yeah, he's [Terence Newman] getting a little bit more gray. Terence is a great kid. He works hard. He probably will have a good birthday on his 40th. I love him. He's always been my guy anyways.
Q: Are these upcoming cuts going to be as tough as any you've made in the past?
A: Yeah, but it's like that every year really. You have to make tough decisions. A lot of it depends on what happens in this game, and then you might end up keeping this guy because you need a backup at this position, or maybe not this guy who might be better than that player but at a different position.
Q: When you're going through cuts, how much do you factor in whether or not you can get a guy to the practice squad?
A: Definitely. We always do that. If you think you can get a guy to the practice squad, that's just another way to keep a couple of extra guys around. Even though the cuts come out next Saturday, that doesn't mean it's going to be the final roster. You're going to be looking for everybody else's cuts. There will still be some trades being made I'm sure. A lot of this is still fluid.
Q: How does getting players on the practice squad without someone else picking them up weigh into your decisions?
A: We either have to put them on the active roster, or put him out on the street so somebody else can pick him up. But the same token, the other team has to put him on their active roster as well. They're going to have to take one of our practice squad guys and put him on their active roster.
Q: How often are you surprised by that process, maybe not getting a guy through to the practice squad or vice versa?
A: I've been surprised, every year, probably two or three guys. I think people have needs at certain places. You kind of get a feel honestly around the league of what positions are not as strong as other positions. Those guys might get poached a little bit more.