Posts tagged with: Albert Young

Preseason Week 1 Game Recap

Game Recap

Well, we’re one week into the Preseason. The Vikings beat the Colts 13-3 Friday night. Like I mentioned before, winning and losing doesn’t mean much for the preseason, but we did see some important things.

Vikings vs Colts

SAGE ROSENFELS LOOKED GOOD
He went 10 for 13 for 91 yards. He looked sharp and he looked comfortable. I really like how they had him running plays. He was taking a 3 to 5 step drop and getting rid of the ball quickly. They also mixed in a lot of play action. If they keep up this kind of play calling in the regular season, it would take away some of the pressure on the running game, because opposing teams would have to have more guys back in coverage. I really liked what I saw.

OUR STARTING DEFENSE LOOKED GREAT
Of course the Colts were playing a very vanilla game plan, but in the first series, Jared Allen, Ray Edwards, and Fred Evans all had a sack. Peyton Manning was sacked 3 times. He got off 2 passes, and completed 1 of them for 6 yards.

Actually, the defense looked strong all night. Even the reserves were putting pressure on the quarterback. That was nice to see.

OUR SPECIAL TEAMS LOOKED MUCH MUCH BETTER
This one was very important. Our special teams was awful last year. Against the Colts they looked fast and sharp. That gives me tons of hope.

ALBERT YOUNG LOOKED GREAT
Like I said before, Albert Young is not going to be one of those guys that has break away speed and scores a 90 yard TD (although many would say the same about Chester Taylor, and he has a 95 yard TD in his stats), but he’s a good solid runner. Friday night he played great. He was patient and waited for the holes, and as soon as they open he bolted through. He averaged over 4 yards a carry. I think he’s going to make the team, and I think he’s going to contribute as much as a 3rd stringer can. I have to assume he would’ve ran even better if he would’ve had the first stringers blocking for him.

THE FIRST YEAR LINEMEN LOOKED GOOD
First year starting center John Sullivan and rookie right tackle Phil Loadholt played some extra time even after the other starters sat down. Sullivan looked like he’s going to do just fine this year. Loadholt made a couple rookie mistakes, causing Tarvaris Jackson to have to run for his life a time or two, and he had one really bad false start, but I chalk those up to first game jitters. When he was on this game, there’s no way anyone was going to get around him. He’s a LARGE man, and he moves very well.

Other notes….

Tarvaris Jackson did not look good. At all. However, to be fair to him, Sage had a better line and a MUCH better supporting cast around him. Tarvaris spent some time being chased by defenders, and he had receivers that weren’t as experienced. Sage looked much much better, but I’ll reserve my final judgement until next Friday when I see how Tarvaris plays with the starters, and how Sage fairs with the backups.

Percy Harvin didn’t play at all. He had dinged his shoulder up a bit on Wednesday, and the Vikings decided to err on the side of caution. I think that’s just fine.

Bernard Berrian left on a cart, but Coach Childress acted at half time like it wasn’t as serious as it looks. I still haven’t found out the extent of the injury. Hopefully he’ll be fine.

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IT’S GAME TIME: Preseason Week 1 Preview: Vikings at Colts

Game Preview

THERE IS A VIKINGS GAME TONIGHT!!!!

Man, am I ever pumped up. I went to a Twins game at the dome yesterday (ugh, but they lost), and tonight I get to watch the Vikings on TV. Good times, I tell ya. Gooooooooood Times.

Anyway, sorry about the excitement. Moving on.

Vikings At Colts

Tonight the Vikings will go to Indianapolis to play the Colts for the first preseason game of the year.  Of course when it comes to preseason, winning and losing doesn’t matter very much.  Instead we want to keep an eye on how the returning players have progressed from last year, and how the new players are going to fit in.  Here’s what I’m personally going to be watching for:

HOW SAGE ROSENFELS PLAYS
This  will be the storyline for the first quarter of tonight’s game.  For the first time in quite a long time, the Vikings have a legitimate quarterback battle taking place going into the season.  It was announced that tonight Sage will get the start with the first team, and next week Jackson will get those honors.  Each of them will basically have probably a quarter of football to impress the coaches to try to win the job.  I’m going to guess there will be a lot of passing going on, and hopefully we’ll get a good chance to see how Sage interacts with guys like Berrian, Shiancoe, and Harvin.

WHAT KIND OF IMPACT WILL HARVIN HAVE?
Speaking of Harvin, will the Vikings be able to work him into the offense tonight even though he’ll probably see limited action?  I seriously doubt we’ll see any wildcat formations tonight, as I’m going to guess that if the Vikings decide to use that package they’ll save it for the regular season.  However, I’d love to be wrong, because I think it’d be exciting to get a glimpse of what our guys can do with exotic lineups.

WHICH DB WILL STEP UP?
Will it be Benny Sapp, who has all kinds of athleticism, but not always the greatest head for the game?  Will it be Marcus McCauley who has played in the system for a while and has some valuable game time experience?  Will it be rookie Asher Allen who has been reported as a very aggressive DB who is not afraid to hit hard and take the ball out of receivers hands?

HOW WILL ALBERT YOUNG LOOK?
I don’t know if this one will interest you a lot, but as I’ve pointed out many times, I’m a big fan of Albert Young.  Chip Scoggins said on ACCESS VIKINGS that he was progressing well through training camp.  I’d love to see him become our #3 RB for this year.  To me he could fill the type of role held in the past by Mewelde Moore or Moe Williams… never the kind of backup who is going to step up and take over a game, but instead the kind of guy who you can rely on to fill whatever role he’s needed for.  Albert Young is an up-the-middle type runner who would be usable in short yardage situations.  He can catch the ball out of the backfield, he can return kicks and punts, and he can play special teams.  I hope he makes the roster.

WHAT ABOUT JOHN DAVID BOOTY?
I’m interested in watching Booty play tonight.  I know that he’ll be playing with the third team, because he’s really not in the race for the starting QB position at all, but I really want to see how he’s progressed.  Last year he looked shaky, even playing against 3rd string defenses.  He’s had a whole year of practices now, and he’s most likely more comfortable with the Vikings system.  He should most likely get to play the entire second half tonight, which will be valuable playing time for him.  I’d like to catch a glimpse to see if it looks like a chance that he can be developed into a starting QB someday, or if he’s going to be one of those players that just turns into a solid backup.

Enjoy the game everyone, and HAPPY FOOTBALL SEASON!!!

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More on Albert Young

A couple days ago I wrote about Albert Young, who I happen to be pulling for to win the #3 spot on the running back depth chart. Access Vikings posted an interview with Albert today.

The first practice starts at 9 a.m. While we’re waiting here’s an interview I did with second-year running back Albert Young, who is competing to be the No. 3 running back.

Young was an undrafted rookie from Iowa who spent last season on the practice squad. Young impressed the staff with his development last year and is making a strong bid to earn a spot on the active roster. Here is some of what he said:

Q: You seem comfortable with the offense and your assignments out there. Is that just a product of having a year under your belt?

Young: Yeah. That’s key. That’s probably the biggest thing for me from Year 1 to Year 2 is being confident in what you’re doing and having an understanding of what is going on so you can just play. You’re not really thinking too much. You can just go out and play and have fun. Of course, you’re not always going to be perfect. But for the most part, you’re just playing.

Read the rest of the interview by clicking HERE

Like I mentioned the other day, I’m personally pulling for Albert Young mostly because he’s from the University of Iowa, and I happen to be a fan of that team. But I also really do think that Young is a very solid player. He impressed me a lot last year during preseason. Yes, it’s true that he was usually running against 3rd and 4th string defensive players, but on the flip side, he was doing it behind a 3rd and 4th string offensive line. He showed last year that he could also catch the ball from the backfield. It’s always valuable for a team to have a running back with good hands on their roster.


Running Backs: Albert Young

I asked Chip Scoggins (from Access Vikings on the Star Tribune) via Twitter how Albert Young is fairing at Training Camp this year. Since I’m also an Iowa Hawkeyes fan, I’m a little bit biased toward Albert Young, and I’d love to see him make the team.

Chip tweeted me back saying that Albert Young looks very solid so far, and that he expects Young to make the team at the #3 spot.


Being on a team that has Adrian Peterson and Chester Taylor, it’s pretty easy for the #3 guy to get lost in the shuffle. Two years ago that guy was Mewelde Moore, and he’d get a carry from time to time, and he got to return some punts. Last year that guy was Maurice Hicks. The only thing I ever noticed about Hicks was the fact that he wasn’t much of a kick returner.

So it doesn’t seem real important that Young will get that job, but I think for a #3 guy, he’d be a solid player to have on the team. He actually reminds me a lot of Chester Taylor in the way he plays. He’s a solid runner who isn’t going to break Peterson-esque long runs, but he’ll steadily gain yards. He blocks well and catches good out of the backfield. Last year during preseason I felt that he played better than Maurice Hicks in pretty much every aspect of the game, including kick returns.

I’m really hoping Chip is right. I’d love to see Albert make the team.


Random news and notes from training camp

Good morning Vikings fans!

Training Camp is in full swing, so I thought I’d take a look at some of the happenings that might be of some interest to you.

Article about the battle at the QB position

John David Booty
John David Booty Brooks Bollinger

For the Vikings, the only QB battle going on is for the 3rd string position between ineffective veteran Brooks Bollinger and 5th round draft pick John David Booty out of USC. I have to think that this isn’t much of a battle. As big of a fan as former Wisconsin offensive-coordinator Brad Childress is of former Wisconsin QB Brooks Bollinger, even he has to see that Brooks just isn’t that great of a quarterback for the NFL. Besides that, the Vikings traded up in the 5th round specifically to get Booty, and Childress likes to have QB projects to work on. I think Booty has the job in the bag, and I think Bollinger is in camp just to drive Booty a little bit.

McKinnie and Allen go head to head
Bryant McKinnie and newcomer Jared Allen are going head to head during practices at training camp. McKinnie says that he’s learning a lot by guarding Allen, who is likely one of the toughest people he’ll face all year, while Allen says that pushing around the almost 350 pound McKinnie all day is definitely helping him get ready for the upcoming season.

One thing I love about the strong left side on the offensive line and the strong defensive line as a whole is that they’re going to work each other hard during practices. If our defensive line can learn to get past an o-line that has McKinnie, Hutchinson, and Birk during practice, then they’re going to be sitting pretty good during regular season games. On the other hand, when our O-line has to learn to block Jared Allen, Pat Williams, and Kevin Williams, most defensive lines that they face during the season are going to seem pretty easy to them.

The Vikings are searching for their kick returners
One of the things that the Vikes are trying to figure out during training camp is who will get to return kicks. The leading candidates for kickoff returns are Maurice Hicks, Albert Young, and Aundrae Allison. The article also mentions that Adrian Peterson and Chester Taylor could also see some time returning kicks. The candidates for punt returners are Bobby Wade, Jaymar Johnson, Aundrae Allison, Bernard Berrian, and Charles Gordon.

As for the punt returners, I have to say that I’d like to see someone other than Bobby Wade do it. I didn’t think Wade was all that impressive last year, and it seemed like he called a fair catch on 95% of the punts, whether he needed to or not. I’d actually like to see what a guy like Berrian could do. I just don’t know enough about Johnson and Gordon.

On kick returns, my official guess is that Hicks will win it, although I would absolutely love for Albert Young to get that job. I’m very much a Hawkeyes fan, so I’ve been watching Young for the last couple of years. I have to say I’m biased for him, for sure, but I think he could contribute to the team. Unfortunately for him, it’s hard to get a position as a running back on a team that has Adrian Peterson and Chester Taylor, so I think him making the team is a long shot. Boy I’d love to see it, though.

Hopefully that scratched the Vikings-itch that I know we’re all dealing with this time of year and gave you a little bit of relief. It’s hard to come up with a whole lot of fresh news this time of year, but don’t worry, pre-season starts in just over a week!

Until next time

-The Jazzy One