Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer
Q: What have you liked most about Ben Gedeon?
A: The thing I like the most about him is he's an old-school kind of guy. He's tough, he finds the football, gets off blocks well. He's probably a Mike linebacker, but we're just trying to get the guys in there that can play, and I figure if we're playing 30 percent base, it's a chance to get him in the game more. But he's done a good job in there and, like all rookies, he made some mistakes, so we're trying to clean those up. But he's pretty conscientious about that.
Q: Do you need another game to decide who starts at that position?
A: Yeah, probably. This will be a good week to get these guys in there one more time and finish the process.
Q: How do you think communication was between linebackers last week, especially the first teamers?
A: I don't think the communication was an issue at all. They quick-counted us a few times. We're used to being out here and our offense really hasn't been going on any quick counts. So we've been a little slow lining up, we've been a little bit slow getting our hand in the dirt and getting things out. But the calls were fine, there was no issues.
Q: Is it good to experience that in a preseason game?
A: Yeah, because it's something you need to harp on. I noticed it the other day, but I didn't really say anything, so that's my fault.
Q: You've talked about how the team has been putting in new concepts this preseason. How much do you think that factored in on Sunday, and time to maybe scale back and get to what you're good at now?
A: Yeah, a little bit. That's part of it. The two touchdowns they had, that wasn't anything where there was some funky call or something like that.
Q: How does C.J. Ham look to you with what you're asking him to do?
A: He's doing good. He's a really good athlete, and obviously he's got some extra value being able to be an extra back, but he's been good on getting to the linebackers and delivering a punch when he gets there.
Q: Now that Rashod Hill has been playing both sides of the offensive line, how do you think he's been handling that transition?
A: I don't think it's so much transition. I had a talk with him today, but it's about being consistent with the things he's doing. If he does it the right way with the proper technique, he's pretty good. And then there are times where he gets off the reservation and does this one time, does that one time. He really has to hone in on being disciplined with his technique.
Q: Do you feel like you've settled in on your starting offensive line, and who some of the rotational players will be?
A: I believe so.
Q: It was a year ago that Teddy Bridgewater went down with injury. From your viewpoint, how has the franchise handled the situation considering everything you guys went through?
A: I think we handled it well as far as the things that we had to do. I still think the trade was the right trade for us. Obviously, it was a freak thing that happened with Teddy, but I don't know, I guess you always handle it the best way you can and try to figure it out. I think Rick [Spielman] did a good job.
Q: When looking at the quarterback situations around the league are you happy about yours no matter how it plays out?
A: Yeah. Yeah, I feel good about it.
Q: How do you feel Teddy has progressed over the past few weeks?
A: Well he's progressed a lot. I don't watch him every single day. He'll be off the sides while we're practicing. The reports I get are all positive. He knows where he's at and knows where he's got to get it. I think he's progressing well. I think it's a year today that it happened maybe and I know that he's all in trying to get ready to play.
Q: What do you need from him to put him into a practice setting?
A: Well, he's got to be able to protect himself on the field and be able to do the movements that are required by his position.
Q: Is he not there yet?
A: No, when he's there he'll practice.
Q: How do you feel about Danielle Hunter's development?
A: Danielle has a terrific athletic skill set in the fact that he's got long arms, speed, and strength. He's an extremely hard worker and he's going to work a lot on his hand placement and his long arm when he uses that. I talked to him today actually about, there's times when he wants to raise up and start to peek to see what the play is going to be instead of coming off low defeating his man and then once he gets control of it and then figure out what's going on from there. To me, that's the next step in the development.
Q: Why does a player do that? Excitement?
A: Well, it happens a lot with tall guys. Some of the taller guys I've had, it's kind of been like that. So you just have to keep harping. It's not as much as it was early in his career. There's still times, maybe its 25 percent of the time and mostly on run downs, typically.* *
Q: Can that affect a guy that much?
A: Yeah, because you don't use your butt and your legs, the strong muscles that you have that you can lock out and really power lift the guy. That's where it comes. If he's on one of the tackles and his job is to go attack the tackle and the first thing he's doing is thinking about playing the run. It's a little bit different with the tight ends but on the open side, he'll come off and he'll be quicker to transfer on play-action passes and things like that. Which is where I think he needs to be. * *
Q: How is Jayron Kearse performing?
A: It's still a work in progress, really. Because he had some bad plays in there, too, and he had some good plays. He came and saw me the other day about some of the things he needs to work on. I talked to him about basically the same things I've told you guys, being able to come under control in the open field. That's where the tall guys on the back end have the issues. It's all about accelerating to the spot, dropping your butt, getting under control. Then when you go to tackle, getting back out of control. If you try to go without getting under control, more than likely you're going to miss the tackle.
Q: Have you started game planning for New Orleans?
Q: When do you typically start?
A: We'll wait until after the cuts. * *
Q: Do you anticipate playing any of your starters on Thursday?
A: I've made up my mind but I haven't told the team yet or anything like that. I haven't told the coaches yet either. After the other night I feel like they should play but we'll see.