*Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer *
We've got one more day before we finish up our preparations for San Francisco. I thought practice was good today, guys are into it and excited. We're looking forward to the opportunity to go out and play.
Q: With some of the young guys do you have to work on calming their nerves?
A: I don't really worry too much about that. It's all about preparation, repetition, doing things right and doing things right and doing things right and then you expect them to do things right in the game. I'm sure that they'll have some things that we haven't prepared for and we may have some things they haven't prepared for, it's all part of playing the first game and every week, really, same thing. I try to figure out when I need to pump them up.
Q: Does this preseason feel longer than some of the past preseasons and more of a build up to get to this point?
A: It did. Before we played Tennessee, that week seemed long. I tried to take care of them this week, shorten practice, got in and out quicker, we just tried to get our legs back and they're ready to go.
Q: What is your assessment of Robert Blanton's preseason?
A: He did well. He did well. Sometimes Robert, he's always wanting to make plays and sometimes he needs to just make the safe play as opposed to trying to go get other things. He's got his strengths and hopefully we can play to those.
Q: Of those safeties who have worked next to Harrison Smith who would you say has been the most consistent guy?
A: Probably [Andrew] Sendejo, or [Robert] Blanton.
Q: Mike Wallace said by his standards he had a couple of off years in Miami, do you think he's going to come out with something to prove?
A: Yeah, I don't know. I don't know. I know he caught a touchdown against me last year and he's caught touchdowns against me in the past. I don't know about his off year, but you'd have to ask him. I'll be surprised if we have anybody not excited to play.
Q: Could you summarize what you've liked from Mike Wallace?
A: He's doing great. He's been great learning the playbooks, he's been great working, he's been great on the practice field. I think he's done a fantastic job as far as learning the system and lining up. It was a different system for him, too. He's been good. He'll go in there and block, see him out there catching balls right now.
Q: Do you feel more comfortable putting your secondary in different situations, maybe more man-to-man?
A: Yeah, yeah I feel good about it. It's not straight man-to-man. We're kind of man within zones kind of a deal.
Q: What is your confidence level in Terence Newman?
A: Good. I feel good, feel great about him.
Q: Feel great about Terence Newman's ability as a 37 year-old corner?
A: I do. I feel good.
Q: Do you expect Zach Line and Shamar Stephen to be available?
A: I do.
Q: Have you seen anything from Terence Newman that has allowed him to maintain his speed for so many years in the league?
A: I think it's good genes. I just think it's good genes. He takes care of his body, works out really hard. He's very smart, that helps. He's seen a lot of stuff. He understands what I'm trying to teach. He had all of the DBs stay after [meetings] yesterday and watch 30 minutes of extra tape, those kind of things that he knows, he helps with these other guys. But he's not here to be a coach, he's here to be a player, but those kind of things help young guys understand what it means to be a professional.
Q: Where does the speed of your cornerbacks compare to some other cornerback tandems you've had?
A: They're fast, they're fast. You want fast corners, but they have to be able to get in and out of breaks because if they're straight-line fast and they can't break, the ball gets there before they can break. There is a combination of that too.
Q: Is anyone questionable or worse or is everyone probable?
A: I could let you wait, but everybody is present and accounted for. They're all here, they're all ready to roll.
Q: And they'll be accountable on Monday night?
A: Yeah, I would hope they're accountable.
Q: When you talk about getting in and out of breaks, how has Trae Waynes looked in that regard?
A: You're correct, he's gotten better, he's gotten better. He's got excellent speed, he's got a lot better. The biggest thing that I've noticed about most college guys when they come, the guy will break and the ball is not there and in the NFL, when you break, you better be humping because that ball is going to get there and that's the biggest difference for guys covering in my opinion in the NFL. The difference between a completion and a contested catch and an uncontested catch is this far. I was talking to him today, receivers want space and DBs don't want any space between them, so that's kind of the area where he's working on now.
Q: Do you see progress in Trae Waynes over the last month?
A: Yeah, he's improved quite a bit. He's doing a good job and it's still part of the process. He's going to be a good player.
Q: Does the preseason give Trae Waynes a pretty good sense of how refs are going to call things?
A: Well, I think he figured it out a little bit after the first week, but I think all of the preseason was good for him, just understanding how close you have to be to a guy. If I'm from that far away, the ball is a completion from him.