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Vikings Roundup 6/8: Eyes, Ears turn to Sensei Sharrif

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Sharrif Floyd has had a set of attentive eyes on him during Vikings organized team activity practices.

After Monday's seventh of 10 scheduled OTA practices, Floyd also had the ears of rookie B.J. Dubose. Floyd is less than a full year older than Dubose but is able to be a sensei to the student because of what he's learned since being selected in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft.

View images from the seventh of ten OTA's.

The defensive linemen spent more than 15 minutes after practice ended with Floyd lining up across from Dubose and facing a rush from the rookie. After each snap, Floyd offered feedback. It's an idea presented by defensive line coach Andre Patterson to tap into what Floyd learned firsthand a year ago in his second pro season and first under Patterson in the Mike Zimmer-George Edwards defense.

"I can't take (credit for) that. If I say that, I'm in trouble," Floyd said with a laugh. "I was comfortable (when Patterson suggested it) about our techniques and style because we've been through it and messed up enough times to know what's good and what's not good.

"I'm just teaching, learning and giving the footnotes that I took since my first year with Coach Patterson that young guys need to know," Floyd added. "I'm getting him on the right path, as far as keeping his mind in a positive state and knowing he can make mistakes."

Dubose called the lessons from Floyd a "really good opportunity." The sixth-round pick teamed with Teddy Bridgewater at Louisville and was a tight end for the quarterback in a 7-on-7 passing league prior to that. Dubose primarily played defensive end in college but logged some work on the interior of the d-line. The 6-4, 284-pound Dubose has seen some snaps at end and some at defensive tackle with the Vikings.

"(Floyd) plays the three tech also," Dubose said. "I watch him work on his technique every day and there's things I need to improve that I go consult with him about. He's a good dude.

"He's a very relaxed guy," Dubose added of Floyd's teaching style. "I'm fortunate to have someone that's willing to work and teach me, but he goes step by step and teaches me the things he was taught before I got here. I did work at both spots, so now I'm trying to get better on the inside and improve as an inside rusher and inside run player because I was playing primarily on the edge throughout my career."

Dubose said "things happen way faster" on the inside "so (I'm working on) my reaction time and staying low. I've just got to get the techniques down on the inside," Dubose said. "In the run game, I've got to work on using a knee bend, and in the pass rush, taking better angles and being better with my hands."

Harris notices 'faster, smarter' players

Undrafted rookie Anthony Harris logged his first on-field action with the Vikings last week and more on Monday. The safety had been recovering from shoulder surgery in December for an injury that he played through in his final season at Virginia.

"Up to this point, I've been trying to stay in the playbook, get all the mental reps, now I'm getting an opportunity to go out there and physically put forth what I've been able to do mentally" Harris said. "Right now, it's about playing fast, applying what I know and trying to get better each day, each practice."

Harris said he's noticed a bigger playbook and more talent on the field during the transition.

"Guys on offense are faster, smarter," said Harris, who ran a 4.56 in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine. "So it's just about being sound in your technique, knowing your coverages, knowing your strengths and knowing what the offense wants to do and going out there and playing fast."

Up next

The Vikings return to the field Tuesday for their eighth OTA practice. They'll have four total this week before returning to Winter Park next week for a mandatory minicamp.

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