Jarius Wright Fantasy News

Vikings have high hopes for WR Charles Johnson

Monday, June 29, 2015, 12:45pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Vikings wide receiver Jerome Simpson was a week from returning to the Vikings' roster after a three-game suspension for drunken driving, when ESPN reported on Sept. 18 that Simpson had been cited in July for misdemeanor marijuana possession and driving with an open bottle. The Vikings released Simpson later that day, and signed Charles Johnson off the Cleveland Browns' practice squad the next day.

It seemed at the time like a move to replenish the Vikings' wide receiver depth with a known commodity -- quarterbacks coach Scott Turner had been Johnson's position coach the previous year in Cleveland -- but Johnson was less than a year removed from knee surgery, and didn't play more than 20 snaps in a game until Nov. 16. From that point on, though, he caught 25 passes for 415 yards and a pair of touchdowns, and supplanted Cordarrelle Patterson as the team's "X" receiver.

"He was recovering from that knee surgery a year ago and I don't know that he was ever 100 percent," offensive coordinator Norv Turner said. "I think he's 100 percent. He's got great work ethic, and he's a big, strong guy. He's a 218-pound receiver that can run. He's got everything you need to be a productive player in this league."

Fantasy Impact:

In organized team activities and minicamp, there was no mystery about where Johnson figured in the Vikings' plans, the story went on to say. He was lined up at split end all spring, and teamed with Mike Wallace and Jarius Wright in the team's three receiver sets. According to ESPN, 33 of Johnson's 58 targets were at least 10 yards downfield, and 13 of those 58 were 20 or more yards downfield. Johnson worked out in Southern California with Bridgewater and a number of the Vikings' receivers this offseason, and also spent time in Houston with Rischad Whitfield, the "Footwork King" who has counted Antonio Brown and DeAndre Hopkins among his clients. Johnson is one of 4for4.com Senior Editor John Paulsen's potential sleepers this year. We rank him 37th on our WR list and he looks to be in a good situation with the offense under OC Norv Turner and a developing QB in Bridgewater.

Vikings WR Mike Wallace impressing at OTAs

Friday, May 29, 2015, 2:35pm

Minnesota Vikings - [Full Article]

New, but not unnoticed. Vikings WR Mike Wallace has made a quick impression on his coaches and teammates.

“I know he’s a dynamic receiver and he’s been doing a great job of working, he’s a guy that works very, very hard,” Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer said. “He’s been catching the ball well. He’s been learning the playbook. All of these things are all different, but he’s looked good.”

Said offensive coordinator Norv Turner: “Mike looks really fast. I don’t know if he needs a double move (to create separation from defenders). He’s getting a feel for our offense. He’s a very smart guy.”

Added NFL Network’s Jeff Darlington, who lives in south Florida and has covered Wallace for all of his NFL career: “I can tell you that the speed is the real deal. This guy is as fast as advertised.”

Fantasy Impact:

Wallace will likely start opposite Charles Johnson with Cordarrelle Patterson and Jarius Wright battling for snaps as the team’s WR3. We're wary anytime a receiver changes teams, especially when he's not getting a promotion, which is the case with Wallace. He will have more opportunity to use his speed since OC Norv Turner likes the deep ball.

Vikings WR Mike Wallace says team's offense is a better fit

Thursday, May 28, 2015, 1:45pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

The Vikings want to push the ball deep in Norv Turner's offense, and Mike Wallace, who was their top target at wide receiver this offseason, was the only one the team had interest in acquiring via a trade. He is playing flanker right now, but he said after the Vikings' organized team activity on Wednesday that he expects to move around the offense. Wherever he is, Wallace expects to feel more at home than he did in Miami.

"I think it's more so [like] my first four years," Wallace said. "It's a vertical offense, [rather] than a short, West Coast offense. You go down the field a lot more here, more what I'm accustomed to."

Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater said he has been spending extra time with Wallace each day, working on routes they ran in practice. The Vikings will use Wallace in a variety of ways -- coach Mike Zimmer has pointed out how dangerous Wallace can be on screen passes, too -- but his deep speed is probably the primary reason he's in Minnesota now.

Fantasy Impact:

Wallace will likely start opposite Charles Johnson with Cordarrelle Patterson and Jarius Wright battling for snaps as the team’s WR3. We're wary anytime a receiver changes teams, especially when he's not getting a promotion, which is the case with Wallace. He will have more opportunity to use his speed since OC Norv Turner likes the deep ball.

Friday, December 26, 2014, 6:53pm

Vikings WR Jarius Wright (back, questionable) returned to take limited reps Friday after missing practice earlier in the week and is questionable for Week 17.

Monday, December 1, 2014, 1:04pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

The Minnesota Vikings began Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers with the goal of getting Teddy Bridgewater in a rhythm early, and they succeded. Bridgewater hit his first five throws of the day, all on short passes or a screen that Charles Johnson took for 24 yards, and finished the day throwing 15 of his 21 passes less than 10 yards, according to ESPN Stats & Information.

But the Vikings want to build an offense that can stretch the field, and it was on the two downfield throws Bridgewater made that coach Mike Zimmer saw progress. He put a 45-yard throw just beyond Johnson's reach in the third quarter -- on a play where Johnson wanted interference on Panthers cornerback Josh Norman and Zimmer said he "thought we could have went up and got after a little bit better" -- and came back four plays later with a 35-yard strike to Jarius Wright on third-and-3.

On both plays, Bridgewater passed up shorter options to take shots downfield when his read of the Panthers' coverage told him he could do so. That, Zimmer said, was a sign of maturity.

"It's third-and-[3] and he's throwing the ball 40 yards down the field and puts the ball on [the] money," Zimmer said. "He got the right look. There were a couple times he had the right look defensively and went to the right place even though it wasn't the safest throw. Those kinds of things are the things I'm talking about when I see his progression and he's always getting better."

Fantasy Impact:

The story went on to say that Bridgewater has talked about his need to play faster on several occasions this year, and as he said on Sunday, that has more to do with making quicker decisions than it does with the speed of his release. When Bridgewater is able to trust what he's seeing before the snap and know where to go with his first read, he's more confident in his ability to find his receivers downfield. It also doesn't help that WR Cordarrelle Patterson didn't see a lot of playing time, which took away that guy who was supposed to be their biggest threat. The Vikings will have a lot of work to do on the offense before 2015, and the hope is Bridgewater starts to show up on the QB2 fantasy radar by then.

Friday, November 28, 2014, 6:04pm

Vikings WR Jarius Wright (hamstring, probable) took full practice reps all week and is probable for Week 13.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 6:20pm

Vikings WR Jarius Wright (hamstring) practiced fully Wednesday.

Friday, November 21, 2014, 6:26pm

Vikings WR Jarius Wright (hamstring, questionable) took full practice reps on Friday after being limited earlier in the week and is questionable for Week 12. Wright should play against the Packers, though he’s no sure thing given the questionable tag.

Thursday, November 20, 2014, 5:58pm

Vikings WR Greg Jennings (rib) missed practice again Thursday. Consider Jennings very iffy to play against his old team. Charles Johnson is on the radar, though Jarius Wright returned to practice on Thursday.

Thursday, November 20, 2014, 5:58pm

Vikings WR Jarius Wright (hamstring) returned to limited practice reps Thursday after missing Wednesday practice. It looks like Wright is back on track to face the Packers.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014, 6:11pm

Vikings WR Greg Jennings (rib) did not practice Wednesday. Consider Jennings iffy to play against his old team. Charles Johnson is on the radar as a Sneaky Start since Jarius Wright is also gimpy with a hamstring injury.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014, 6:11pm

Vikings WR Jarius Wright (hamstring) did not practice Wednesday. Wright seems unlikely to play against the Packers. Charles Johnson would see extra work if Wright misses.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014, 1:34pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

With Vikings WR Jerome Simpson out for the first three games, what happens to the Vikings' three-receiver sets?

Fortunately for the Vikings' receiver depth, their offense has two things working in its favor. First, OC Norv Turner makes frequent use of two-tight end sets; the San Diego Chargers used more of them than all but one team while Turner was the head coach from 2007-12, and used the fewest three-receiver formations during that time. And second, the Vikings have another versatile wideout in third-year man Jarius Wright.

The 5-foot-11 Wright, who'd been cast as a slot receiver early in his rookie year, actually ran 192 of his 252 routes lined up wide last season, as Jennings and Patterson got more of the slot work. He caught 23 of his 26 passes lined up out wide, and clicked with quarterback Matt Cassel late in the season, catching 14 of his 26 passes from Cassel for 252 yards. Wright saw 30.7 percent of his routes from the slot during the preseason, and he's got plenty to prove in Year 3 as he tries to carve out a niche in the offense, so he should be ready and eager to fit into the Vikings' scheme while Simpson is out.

Fantasy Impact:

The story breaks it down in depth on how the team will move its WRs around this year based on the preseason: During their third preseason game in Kansas City, when the Vikings' starters played almost all of the first three quarters, they ran 18 plays out of three-receiver sets, displaying impressive variety in how they lined up their three wideouts. Cordarrelle Patterson, Greg Jennings and Simpson all saw time on both sides and in the slot. It's perhaps especially good news for Patterson owners that the team is trying to create mismatches for the talented WR.

Schefter: Vikings WR Jerome Simpson is being suspended three games

Friday, August 29, 2014, 11:32am

Adam Schefter, Twitter - [Full Article]

Vikings WR Jerome Simpson is being suspended 3 games, per a league source.

Fantasy Impact:

This will open up opportunities for Jarius Wright early in the season.

Saturday, August 2, 2014, 4:29pm

ESPN - [Full Article]

Versatility from Vikings wide outs is what receivers coach George Stewart views as a strength for his group that hopes to be featured more with steady quarterback play.

"In Norv's offense, everything's up for everyone," Stewart said. "We have guys that can handle different things. Hopefully we have a chance to be very, very, very multiple at the outside receiver spot."

Jarius Wright became the first receiver since Titus Young on Oct. 28, 2012 to record multiple touchdown catches against the Seahawks when he caught a 21-yarder from the slot position later in the game.

However, Wright only lined up in the slot about a quarter of his snaps last season as the team prominently featured Jennings in that role. With Cordarrelle Patterson's continued development and a proven downfield threat in Jerome Simpson, Wright's versatility despite his lack of height will help his cause to be more featured in his third NFL season.

Fantasy Impact:

Wright looks like he's going to get time in the slot this season as the team's WR3, but he's going to have to prove himself before being fantasy worthy. The Vikes are also going to rely heavily on TE Kyle Rudolph in the passing game, according to reports, so Wright will have to fight for targets.

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