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Sorting Through The Vikings Wide Receivers

August 10, 2010

The Corps

The Vikings wide receiver corps has been making headlines lately. Unfortunately, it’s not due to their play on the practice field. In fact, it’s their lack of presence at training camp that is driving the news. The talented group of wideouts is missing some key players while others are stepping up their game.

Sidney Rice began training camp on the PUP list and has yet to see the practice field. Adding another ripple to Rice’s absence, Judd Zulgad wrote this morning that Rice may not rush back to the field because of unhappiness with his contract.

The situation is so vague that it has led to a growing feeling that Rice isn’t rushing back in part because of a contract that will pay him a base salary of $550,000 this season with no escalators.

And with Percy Harvin missing the past 10 days (and counting) of practice, the Vikings find themselves practicing without two of their top three receivers. Harvin initially left Mankato due to the death of his grandmother, but Childress confirmed today that the second year player is dealing with the same migraines that held him out of numerous practices last season.

One of the younger players that is turning a few heads is 3rd-year wideout Logan Payne. C.J. Siewert of Vikings.com notes that Payne has been getting plenty of action with the “1st and 2nd offensive units throughout training camp.” The former Minnesota Golden Gopher was initially a long-shot to make the team, but with Rice and Harvin sidelined, the Vikings may be forced to keep 6 wide receivers on their final 53-man roster.

The Vikings open up the preseason Saturday night in St. Louis against the Rams. And after seeing the receivers in their first live action, the pecking order should begin to take form.

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