Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer
*Q: Did Everson Griffen do much at all today? *
A: No, he came out for the walk through and then went back in. He's sick.
*Q: Do you still expect him to play? *
A: I anticipate he'll play, yeah.
*Q: What about the other guys - Brandon Watts and Michael Mauti? *
A: Watts, Mauti's probably out. Who's the other one? Zach Line will probably be out.
Q: How has the transition been without Mike Priefer not being in the building? How do you think him handing it over to Joe Marciano has been?
A: Well we miss Prief first of all, but Joe's carried over the intensity that Priefer always has. It's been good. We've been doing the same things that we practiced. Mike had the gameplan done long before he left so it's been pretty seamless as far as the transition.
Q: When was the last day he was in the building?
A: It was Sunday, midnight. Sunday at midnight.
Q: Was he here until midnight?
A: I don't know, I wasn't here until midnight. He said he was going to be here until midnight.
*Q: Former Vikings Head Coach Jerry Burns was out at practice today. Did he give you any advice for your first regular season game? *
A: No, I had him and Coach [Paul] Wiggin both here and I just asked them if they were ever nervous and they said they could never sleep the night before a game. They were just very positive about what they've seen in the preseason and what Coach Wiggin has seen out here on the field.
Q: Did they address the team at all?
*Q: Have you had a chance to talk to Bill Parcells recently about your first regular season game? *
A: He texted me on Tuesday I believe it was and I texted him back but that was about it.
Q: How do you feel going in? Are you nervous?
A: It hasn't hit yet but it will. I'll be nervous. I'm excited though, I'm excited to watch this team play. If we play it like we practice and do it like we did I really shouldn't be nervous because we're doing the right things but it's just my nature that I'm a high strung type.
Q: What are you maybe most apprehensive about? What do you sense might be different as a head coach from the preseason to the regular season?
A: I'm not apprehensive about that at all. When I was a defensive coordinator, actually I had a heck of a dream last night, I dreamt we won the Super Bowl. It was amazing. It was real too, I was getting ready to get up on that podium but then I woke up.
*Q: What did you eat before you went to bed? *
A: I had a little turkey sandwich and that's it.
As a defensive coordinator you know my fear was always we wouldn't tackle anybody the whole day so that kind of tells you my nervousness.
Q: Do you feel that any preparation that you and Rick Spielman went through during training camp help you prepare for the preseason game?
A: It did because it got me thinking more about the situations during the course of the ball game. I'm a lot more aware of the different situations in the game than I was as a defensive coordinator.
Q: Do you feel there will be a difference in the level of play between your defense in Cincinnati last year and this defense?
A: It's not so much the personnel or anything like that. I think back on the beginning of when we went to Cincinnati and the installs, we are probably ahead of where we were at that point. I don't know, I don't think too much back about Cincinnati other than Marvin (Lewis) and the guys I used to coach with.
Q: How important is a fast start to this game for this season?
A: It's not so much about the fast start, I think it's important for us to go out and have success. We've been doing all these things, like I told the team today, we come in here, we changed the weight room, we changed how we eat, we've done all these things, the way we study, the way we practice and all of it doesn't matter unless we go out and play good on Sundays. Again, it's still a lot about the process of where we are at and how we are going. This football team, they've accepted us as coaches, they've done everything we've asked them to do. I'm proud of them to this point, we've just got to go out on Sundays and do what we need to do.
Q: Can you say at this point how much you expect to call defensive plays?
A: I'll probably call a lot of them, I'd guess.
Q: In the preseason did the play calling take away from your other game management responsibilities?
A: I don't know. I did it in the preseason, too. Every game, so it's alright. I mean there's time where I have to go back and talk to the guys and Norv [Turner] handles things when I'm busy.
Q: What did you think of Adrian Peterson saying he was going to take his first carry for a touchdown?
A: I didn't see it, to be honest with you.
Q: He's saying first carry, touchdown.
A: I'm all for it.
Q: What do you expect from Adrian Peterson?
A: I think he did pretty good last year, didn't he? Actually, the year he almost set the rushing record, I don't think he had any carries either, right?
Q: Have you ever had a guy that you've coached that has been limited like that in the preseason?
A: I can't remember about Emmitt [Smith] back in those days. I know it's happened before with, I think Walter Payton when he was playing.