For what it’s worth, rookie Stefon Diggs was running with the first-team offense in the three-receiver set during the open part of practice this morning. But we should also note that the media only gets to see the first few minutes of practice. Probably because we’d report things like this.
For those keeping track, Diggs ran with the starters on Wednesday, ran behind Charles Johnson on Thursday and was back with the starters on Friday. Whether or not he plays starter's snaps in Week 7, only OC Norv Turner knows. We feel comfortable ranking Diggs as a WR4 with upside, but owners counting on him this week should be aware of his floor. It's hard to believe that the Vikings would send him back to the bench after his quality play in the last two games, but stranger things have happened.
Johnson started Minnesota's first three games alongside Wallace and caught just six passes for 46 yards. He has missed the past two games because of a rib injury and watched while rookie Stefon Diggs caught 13 passes for 216 yards.
Diggs got the start in Sunday's 16-10 win over Kansas City at TCF Bank Stadium and hauled in seven catches for 129 yards. With Johnson close to returning, Zimmer wouldn't commit Monday to a starter moving forward.
"You don't lose your starting job because of injury, but you lose your starting job because of performance," Zimmer said. "But, no, I have not decided that yet."
Johnson was a pleasant surprise during the second half of last season, earning a starting job after being plucked off the Cleveland Browns' practice squad but hasn't looked like the same player this year.
Friday, October 16, 2015, 6:15pm
Thursday, October 15, 2015, 6:18pm
Vikings WR Charles Johnson (rib) took limited practice reps again Thursday. Johnson could become a Sneaky Start if Mike Wallace (knee) isn’t able to play in Week 6. Wallace says that he’s going to play.
Thursday, October 15, 2015, 6:18pm
Wednesday, October 14, 2015, 6:20pm
Wednesday, October 14, 2015, 6:20pm
Vikings WR Mike Wallace (knee) did not practice Wednesday. Wallace had a good Week 5 and is reportedly dealing with soreness in his knee despite having the bye week to heal. He says there is “zero doubt” that he’ll play in Week 6.
Mike Wallace missed practice on Monday and is "day-to-day" with a sore knee, according to ESPN's Ben Goessling. He also missed Minnesota's only practice before the bye-week break.
Adding to the uncertainty at the wide receiver position, fellow starter Charles Johnson still hasn't fully recovered from a rib injury that kept him out the last time Minnesota played.
The Vikings need Wallace on the field, as he's the team's leading receiver with 20 catches for 233 yards and a touchdown this season. The Vikings were lucky enough to discover reserve receivers Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen, who combined for 12 catches and 157 yards against the Broncos in Week 4. They could have a big role again if Wallace and Johnson would be out Week 6.
In Week 4, Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph was targeted four times, catching two passes for seven yards in the 23-20 loss at Denver. That brought his four-game totals to 14 catches, which ranks 67th in the league, for 104 yards, which ranks outside the top 100.
“The [pass rush] we just played is probably one of the best in football and when we do stuff like that, I’m required to be in more helping our offensive line with protection,” Rudolph said. “There will be plenty of opportunities for me down the road to catch footballs. As a tight end, there can be so many different responsibilities outside of just catching the ball, even though it seems like everybody on the outside only bases our success on receptions.”
Look for Rudolph to catch more passes eventually. But right now, with Peterson returning, Mike Wallace emerging and the offensive line still adjusting to two lost starters, it’s going to take a little time for offensive coordinator Norv Turner to work through some kinks.
Rudolph was very active as a receiver in the first two weeks, catching 10 passes for 83 yards and a touchdown on 14 targets. But over the past two weeks he has not been as involved. Owners should keep this in mind -- if the Vikings are facing a strong pass rush, Rudolph's targets may be limited.
Friday, October 2, 2015, 6:45pm
Vikings WR Charles Johnson (rib, out) missed practice all week and is out for Week 4. Mike Wallace gets a slight boost due to the likelihood of a few extra targets, but it’s a bad matchup against a good Denver secondary.
Charles Johnson isn't one of the three Vikings-drafted receivers on the roster, nor is he the prized offseason acquisition.
But since Johnson was plucked off the Cleveland Browns' practice squad nearly a year ago, he's been one of Teddy Bridgewater's favorite targets in a receiver room that has been recently bolstered with developing young talent, like fifth-round pick Stefon Diggs, and a new face in Mike Wallace.
"Charles continues to make plays," coach Mike Zimmer said. "Catches the ball, runs good routes. The touchdown he caught, I thought the guy was grabbing the heck out of him the whole way."
After the Vikings jettisoned Jerome Simpson last fall, Johnson joined the Vikings after spending the 2013 season rehabbing a torn ACL under then-Browns offensive coordinator Norv Turner. Less than two months later, Johnson became the Vikings' starting split end over 29th-overall pick Cordarrelle Patterson and turned 25 catches into 415 yards as Bridgewater's go-to target in the rookie quarterback's best stretch of play in December, the story added. We see potential for Johnson and think he could at least put up low-end WR3 numbers, like he did from Week 11 on last year when he finished as WR31 in that span. We rank him 39th on our WR list, and he's getting some mid-round draft attention.
Monday, August 17, 2015, 9:01am
Stills had been out with a calf injury. It’s an ideal time for him to return with the Dolphins practicing against the Panthers in Spartanburg later this week and then playing their second preseason game Saturday night game in Carolina.
That leaves just rookie DeVante Parker as the only receiver out of the lineup for Miami. Parker is recovering from offseason foot surgery.
OC Bill Lazor, who took over play-calling duties last year and elevated Miami’s offense to 11th in the NFL at 24.3 points per game.
He oversaw a faster offense that made space for playmakers and took advantage of mismatches.
But he could do only so much with the personnel he inherited. This season, the Dolphins have brought in bigger red-zone threats in 6-foot-5 tight end Jordan Cameron and 6-3 rookie receiver DeVante Parker, who is recovering from foot surgery.
It’s a lot of new faces for Lazor, but he said it all starts with his quarterback and center, who already have a year of experience in the offense.
“We’re gonna go as fast as Ryan Tannehill and Mike Pouncey can go,” Lazor said. “The other guys got to keep up.”
Expectations are high for the Miami offense but a lot will depend on the offensive line too the story said. Like the Eagles, the team wants to move fast at times and the hope for them is Tannehill now has the weapons around him. Tannehill comes in 10th on our QB list this year so fantasy expectations are high too. He's among a tier of QBs owners who wait on the position will be thinking about when it comes to the mid-to-late rounds. His ADP is the ninth for 12 team leagues.
All of these things were said, or reported, about the veteran wide receiver from the end of last year and into the offseason. But the version of Wallace that the Vikings have seen since acquiring him for a fifth-round pick in the 2015 draft in March has been anything but a recalcitrant player.
Wallace is usually the last guy off the field following each practice because he wants to put in extra work. He has granted just about every interview he has been asked to conduct and he has talked about wanting to be a leader.
So what has changed when it comes to a guy whose last act with the Dolphins involved getting into a sideline altercation in Week 17 that got him benched in the second half?
"I definitely have something to prove," Wallace said. "Everyone knows why I'm here. I have a lot to prove, man."
Wallace didn't come cheap but the Vikes can opt out after the 2015 or 2016 season. The team feels he's a good fit for OC Norv Turner's offense and is a potential deep threat. Wallace isn't coming off a terrible season in Miami. He led the Dolphins in receiving yards (862) and touchdowns (10) and was second with 67 receptions. However, he and quarterback Ryan Tannehill failed to develop the type of chemistry and consistency that Wallace had with Ben Roethlisberger in Pittsburgh, the story said. The hope is Wallace will develop with young QB Teddy Bridgewater. Wallace is ranked 36th on our WR list and can be had in the middle rounds of drafts.
The Miami Dolphins overhauled their wide receiver group this offseason, with the exception of promising second-year player, Jarvis Landry. Mike Wallace, Brian Hartline, and Brandon Gibson are all out of Miami, and have been "replaced" by Greg Jennings, Kenny Stills, and DeVante Parker.
Three new receivers, three better fits for Ryan Tannehill, according to head coach Joe Philbin. He is confident the trio of Jennings, Stills, and Parker are better for Tannehill than the previous trio of Wallace, Hartline, and Gibson.
"I do think it’s a better skill set to match [Tannehill]," Philbin told the Palm Beach Post.
As expected, first-round pick DeVante Parker should be a big part of the offense this season. Philbin had great things to say about Stills' speed and called Parker and Jennings QB-friendly guys. A combination of these three receivers, plus Landry, the story said, should give Tannehill the weapons he needs. Add in newly-acquired tight end Jordan Cameron and the Dolphins look like a dangerous offense. As a result, Tannehill finds himself ranked 10th on our QB list. If he can produce QB1 numbers, he could be a real steal with an ADP of the ninth round in 12-team leagues.
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