Chris Tomasson / St. Paul Pioneer Press
MINNEAPOLIS — So much for momentum carrying over on offense for the Vikings. A week after an impressive showing on offense in the preseason opener, Minnesota's first team came out flat Saturday. The defense was generally good, but the Vikings fell 14-10 to Jacksonville at U.S.Bank Stadium in the second exhibition.
ST. PAUL—Laquon Treadwell, the Vikings' first-round draft choice in 2016, caught just 21 passes in his first two NFL seasons. The time has come for the No. 23 overall pick two years ago to start producing. And it seems he might be ready to do just that considering he is having a strong training camp. "Results are coming now," Treadwell said this week. "But I know I haven't arrived technically even though I'm making a lot of plays, scoring a lot of touchdowns and doing a lot of great things (in practice). I know there's a lot to still accomplish and to still achieve."
MINNEAPOLIS — The last time the Vikings played at U.S. Bank Stadium, the "Minnesota Miracle" unfolded. Kirk Cousins was glued to the television at the home of his in-laws in Atlanta and scarcely could believe what he saw. "I was watching and was blown away,'' he said. "The look on my face was probably similar (in disbelief to defensive end) Everson Griffen's or some guys on the field.'' The Vikings defeated the New Orleans Saints 29-24 in the NFC playoffs last January on Case Keenum's 61-yard touchdown pass to Stefon Diggs on the final play of the game.
EAGAN, Minn. — Vikings linebacker Antwione Williams was arrested in Edina in May on suspicion of drunken driving and pleaded guilty in July to a misdemeanor charge of careless driving, court records show. The Pioneer Press learned of the arrest Thursday, Aug. 16. The Vikings signed Williams, 25, last September, and he spent the remainder of the season on the practice squad. He re-signed with the team in January, and is listed second on the depth chart at strong-side linebacker behind Anthony Barr. He played in last Saturday's preseason opener at Denver.
EAGAN, Minn. — With Vikings defensive tackle Jaleel Johnson in line to play more in his second season in the NFL, he spent much of the offseason lifting weights and working with a nutritionist. Drinking water instead of sports drinks wasn't too much of an ask. But the next step was. "I cut out fast food," Johnson said. "Man, I was definitely a McChicken guy. That was my thing." Johnson said he put on 10 "good" pounds to get up to 300. One reason for that is he will be playing a lot more nose tackle.
EAGAN, Minn.—Anthony Barr hasn't changed his tune about wanting to play for the Vikings long term. "Absolutely," he said Tuesday. Still, it is uncertain if the 26-year-old linebacker, entering the final year of his contract, and the Vikings are close to a contract extension. "I'm just focusing on being here and getting better, so we'll let that figure itself out," Barr said.
EAGAN, Minn.—The Vikings have two Pro Bowl selections in the secondary. Could another one join the party? Minnesota coach Mike Zimmer said Tuesday that Trae Waynes is continuing to improve and there is a way he can become an "elite'' cornerback. The Vikings already have one in Xavier Rhodes and they have a top safety in Harrison Smith.
EAGAN, Minn.—Vikings rookie Roc Thomas kept a straight face when describing what he was attempting to do in Saturday's preseason opener. "I was trying to get my name out," he said. "That was the whole goal." Then Thomas laughed. "I'm kidding, man." Regardless, it worked. The undrafted rookie running back left a lasting impression in the Vikings' 42-28 exhibition victory over the Broncos, catching three passes for 102 yards and two touchdowns and rushing eight times for 29 yards.
EAGAN, Minn. — Vikings coach Mike Zimmer has one primary rule for this week's scrimmages against the Jacksonville Jaguars: No fighting. After the New York Jets and Washington Redskins getting into practice fights over the weekend in Richmond, Va., Zimmer wants to make sure nothing like that happens when the Vikings and Jaguars practice against each other Wednesday and Thursday in advance of Saturday's preseason game at U.S. Bank Stadium.
DENVER — For those simply waiting for Dalvin Cook to take over as the Vikings' starting running back, Latavius Murray might have something to say about that. Yes, it remains most likely that Cook will settle in as the starter once he returns to game action following surgery last October for a torn left ACL. In the meantime, Murray is at least keeping it interesting.