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POSTED BY: panxing18 on 10/10/2018 23:19:44


Already owning one of the strongest defensive lines in the league Craig Anderson Jersey , the Minnesota Vikings have made another addition to their front four this summer.

He even was a former first-round draft pick.

Anthony Barr has established his place as the strong side linebacker, an integral part of coach Mike Zimmer’s pressure-driven scheme. This switch is not by any means complete or permanent, considering the value Barr has given the Vikings while rarely missing a snap in the middle of the defense with former college teammate Eric Kendricks. With Brian Robison capably spelling Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter at the defensive end spots, there’s not a glaring need for one.

Sliding Barr and his athleticism and speed to the front, though, provides yet another way Zimmer and the Vikings can attack an offense.

”Definitely, it could be a change-up for us,” Barr said. ”Hopefully I can get a couple more opportunities to do that, and we’ll see where it goes. It’s something I’m going to continue to work on and get better at. I’m excited for it.”

The Vikings have used passing-situation packages this offseason that include cornerback Terence Newman at safety while making Harrison Smith a hybrid linebacker. Put Barr at defensive end, and Everson Griffen can move inside. Or Barr could simply line up as a fifth down lineman. Either way, that’s the potential for quite the fierce pass rush.

”We are just trying to utilize our guys the best way we can,” Zimmer said. ”If a guy has a skill set of being possibly a pass rusher, then we’re going to look at him and see if he can be a pass rusher. If a guy’s a great inside cover guy Authentic Taylor Hall Jersey , then we’re going to try and look at him there.”

Barr has taken plenty of turns with the defensive linemen during individual drills in training camp so far, evidence that this is more than just a token experiment.

”It’s a conscious effort in getting him into rush situations where he knows what to do,” Zimmer said. ”I really don’t have any concerns when he’s rushing on a back, but sometimes when he gets on a bigger stronger guy and gets in certain positions, he has to know what to do.”

Barr was the first player the Vikings drafted after hiring Zimmer in 2014, the ninth overall selection out of UCLA who spent only two years with the Bruins on defense after beginning his college career as a running back. With 10 sacks, six forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries and one interception over four seasons, Barr has left himself plenty of room to improve on such modest statistics. There are many more ways to contribute than those basic measurements, of course, but Zimmer’s matter-of-fact assessment in 2016 that Barr ”has a tendency to coast a little bit” still hovers over his trajectory.

Across the NFL, Barr is known mostly for his hit on Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers in the sixth game of the year that led to a broken collarbone and set the NFC North rivals on opposite courses in 2017. Interestingly, referee Pete Morelli told reporters at Minnesota’s practice facility on Thursday that the league’s stricter rules about targeting defenseless players would now make that play a 15-yard penalty.

Barr is the only core player left on an expiring contract http://www.officialblackhawksproshop.com/authentic-adidas-artem-anisimov-jersey , with extensions recently signed by wide receiver Stefon Diggs, defensive end Danielle Hunter and Kendricks. Barr’s salary for 2018 is a little more than $12.3 million, and he hinted at disappointment when spring practices began without a new deal. He didn’t address the subject in his first remarks to reporters at training camp.

”My focus is here at camp, getting better with the team, and we’ll let that figure itself out,” he said.

If this defensive end thing works well, Barr’s price will only go higher.

”I’ll never talk business out in the open or in public,” general manager Rick Spielman said. ”I’ll just tell you he fits everything that we want as a Minnesota Viking.”

Forrest Lamp tore a ligament in his right knee on the third day of his first NFL training camp. He hadn't participated in another football practice until Monday.

One year and 11 days after that heartbreaking injury, Lamp has returned to practice with the Los Angeles Chargers. The offensive lineman's excitement about his rookie year vanished long ago into months of tough rehabilitation, but Lamp was excited to reach another milestone on his steady progress back to the field.

"It's like the first day of school, but it's like riding a bike," Lamp said. "It comes back pretty quickly."

Lamp participated only in individual drills at Jack Hammett Sports Complex, staying out of team drills. The Chargers have resisted the urge to rush anything with their 2017 second-round draft pick as he plays his way back to compete for a starting spot at guard.

"I have felt good for quite a while Youth Sebastian Janikowski Jersey ," Lamp said. "But you feel good, then have a bad day, then you feel good. It's just like anything else in life. I just stick to the plan they give me."

The Western Kentucky product was considered one of the top offensive linemen in last year's draft, particularly among the guard prospects. The Chargers grabbed him with the 38th overall pick, and he probably had a shot to win a starting job in camp after performing solidly in offseason activities.

But Lamp seriously injured his knee right away, requiring surgery and extensive rehabilitation.

Lamp had never experienced anything like it in his football life.

He was a model of durability at Western Kentucky, where he started 51 games while largely playing as a left tackle. He missed just two games during four years with the Hilltoppers, both due to an ankle injury in his senior year.

"It was great to be back out here and not with the training staff," Lamp said after practice.

Lamp was in a potentially awkward situation after his injury as he attempted to keep up with the Chargers during their relocation season even though he had never played in a game with his new teammates.

"I felt like part of the team," Lamp said. "You get drafted in April and you show up in May, so you're only here for two months during OTAs and minicamp. In that short period of time, you gain a lot of friends, which you wouldn't think you would. When I got hurt Customized Detroit Lions Jerseys , a bunch of the guys texted me. I was around and I was in meetings, so I still felt like part of the team. They did a good job of including me in things."

Lamp needed a second surgery in May after he felt pain in his knee, but it was merely an arthroscopic cleanup procedure. He appears to be moving well on the knee, and he feels publicly confident about his return.

But the Chargers are still sticking to their deliberate plans with Lamp. Coach Anthony Lynn acknowledges he would like to see Lamp play in their third exhibition game against Seattle on Aug. 25, but everything will depend on Lamp's progress over the next week.

"Oh, it's huge," Lynn said. "It's been a long time for Forrest. He's champing at the bit, man. We're trying to hold him back right now."

NOTES: Lamp was activated from the physically unable to perform list before practice. ... After their tight ends largely struggled in the preseason opener, the Chargers claimed tight end Je'Ron Hamm off waivers from Seattle on Monday. Los Angeles waived receiver Marcus Peterson to make room. Hamm has spent time with four other teams during the past four years, making two career receptions. The Chargers have said nothing recently about their interest in re-signing Antonio Gates, the leading pass-catcher in franchise history. The Chargers and Gates talked about a reunion after starter Hunter Henry was lost for the season to an injury during offseason activities.

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