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Vikings Camp 3-Cap Day 6: Rhodes Closes End Zone in 2-Minute Drill

MANKATO, Minn. — The conundrum of intra-squad practice is "Was that good by the offense and bad by the defense? Was it bad by the offense and good by the defense? Was it good by both yet better by one?"

The Vikings participated in the two-minute-drill for the first time of 2016 Vikings Training Camp on Thursday.

The first team received the ball at the 34-yard line with a fresh set of downs and 1:30 on the clock.

Teddy Bridgewater connected with Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs for short gains to set up third-and-3. Trae Waynes made a nice pass breakup on third down to deny a pass intended for Thielen.

Facing fourth-and-3, Bridgewater found Charles Johnson on a shallow crossing route with a step on Andrew Sendejo. Johnson was able to turn up the field for a 49-yard gain to the 10 before he was ushered out of bounds by Harrison Smith, who hustled in pursuit.

After a short gain to Matt Asiata and a purposeful throw out of bounds, Bridgewater took a chance at the end zone, but Xavier Rhodes skied and collected it for an interception.

"There's a little give-and-take," Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said. "We probably shouldn't have thrown that ball there in the end zone to get intercepted. That's what I talked to Teddy about. We don't need to panic in that situation. We've got lots of time to throw the ball away, and 'Let's go to the next play.' "

The interception by Rhodes brought back memories of his interception at Green Bay in Week 17 to help secure the division title.

Zimmer was asked during a session with beat writers about how Rhodes has looked this camp.

"Good. I think he's been solid," Zimmer said. "I still want him to deny the ball more, like all guys, but he's been good."

Rhodes wasn't the only recent first-round pick at cornerback to snag an interception. Trae Waynes opened a period of practice with an interception on a pass intended for Diggs on a day when the Vikings rested veteran Terence Newman.

Competition is feisty during 1-on-1 red zone drill

Perhaps the most spirited portion of Thursday's practice came midway through it when wide receivers and defensive backs went 1-on-1 in the red zone.

The position groups went up against each other 22 times, with each side getting the advantage about half of the time.

The offense caught a few touchdowns, the defense responded with a few plays and some instances were simply a draw.

Wide receiver Stefon Diggs had the route of the day when he faked an inside move on cornerback Xavier Rhodes before bursting back outside to haul in a score.

Wide receiver Marken Michel had a pair of touchdown grabs while Isaac Fruechte overpowered cornerback Jabari Price for another score.

The defense had their moments, too, especially when Rhodes had airtight coverage on wide receiver Charles Johnson and safety Antone Exum, Jr. showed strong closing speed to bat away a pass intended for Jarius Wright.

So that's what Adrian Peterson looks like…

Oh my goodness.

That was my reaction after Adrian Peterson cut and turned on the jets Thursday on a simple run play.

With Peterson and the Vikings being somewhat cautious in camp due to hamstring issue, I hadn't seen Peterson at full speed up close yet.

But when he took a handoff and bolted to the right, he was on another level.

When Peterson was named the No. 5 player on NFL Network's "Top 100 Players of 2016," Arizona defensive back Tyrann Mathieu joked that his shoulders still hurt from tackling Peterson in a December game.

Now I know why.

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