Kellen Mond, Sean Mannion struggles spotlight QB depth considerations behind Kirk Cousins

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EAGAN, Minn. — Kirk Cousins had a nondescript night time on the Minnesota Vikings’ training camp follow session on Monday, but it surely was his backups who stole the present — and never in a great way. Neither Kellen Mond nor Sean Mannion regarded prepared for prime time because the Vikings staged a fully-padded night follow in entrance of seven,000 followers, probably leaving Minnesota weak within the occasion of a Cousins damage.

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The Vikings want a brand new No. 2 QB behind Kirk Cousins

The play of the night time was arguably Cousins’ very first move try, a completion to Justin Jefferson on a slant route. Cousins didn’t make any apparent errors on the night time, however he didn’t make any excellent performs, both. Head coach Kevin O’Connell talked about throughout a pre-practice press convention that coaching camp is “the time to attempt issues,” however Cousins by no means actually aired it out.

The larger story was the substandard play of Mond and Mannion, the 2 signal-callers vying for Minnesota’s backup quarterback job. Mannion made one begin rather than Cousins in 2021, however Mond — the membership’s third-round decide in 2021 — is competing to turn out to be the Vikings’ new No. 2.

Whereas we’ve got to watch out to not make sweeping conclusions based mostly on one coaching camp follow, neither Mond nor Mannion regarded able to win video games on the NFL stage on Monday night time — and their struggles have lasted all camp lengthy.

Mond is way extra athletic than Mannion, which might assist throughout in-game conditions. However he made fixed errors. He dropped a shotgun snap from backup heart Chris Reed, a mistake he’s repeated all through camp. Within the Vikings’ two-minute drill, Mond threw a brief checkdown inbounds with 20 seconds left on the clock. And he would’ve taken a number of sacks had tonight’s follow been an precise recreation.

Mannion was additionally “sacked” quite a lot of occasions and regarded extremely gradual and stiff on the sphere. Mond, a minimum of, has his mobility going for him — Mannion was a statue within the pocket. The 30-year-old threw behind receivers on just a few events, and his try at a quick-game move acquired blown up by linebacker Jordan Hicks. The Vikings’ workers didn’t even give Mannion an opportunity to run his personal two-minute drill on the finish of follow.

Cousins has missed solely two video games because the 2015 marketing campaign, so Minnesota has happily been in a position to chorus from turning to their backup quarterbacks. However Mond and Mannion’s ongoing struggles might pressure the Vikings to look elsewhere for a brand new No. 2 possibility.

May they swing a commerce for Sam Darnold (with the Panthers choosing up nearly all of his wage)? How about choosing up Mason Rudolph from the Steelers or Mike White from the Jets? Relying on how a lot worth O’Connell and common supervisor Kwesi Adofo-Mensah put upon the backup quarterback place, they made have to make a transfer earlier than the common season will get underway.

Minnesota Vikings damage report

The Vikings are remarkably wholesome at this level in coaching camp. That’s important for a crew looking for a brand new id below a first-year common supervisor and head coach, as Minnesota’s decision-makers are receiving the chance to guage practically each participant on the roster.

Rookie security Lewis Cine was nowhere to be discovered on the follow subject, however the Vikings later introduced that their first-round decide had been excused from follow. He’ll return to the membership after they follow once more on Wednesday.

Tight finish Irv Smith Jr. was one other notable absence, however that was to be anticipated after he underwent thumb surgical procedure final week. He’s nonetheless more likely to be prepared for Week 1. Along with Cine and Smith, rookie cornerback Akayleb Evans, defensive deal with Julian Taylor, and large receiver Dan Chisena didn’t go well with up. Extensive receiver Blake Proehl and linebacker Ryan Connelly are on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list.

Fast hits from Vikings coaching camp

  • Kicker Greg Joseph had a superb night time general, changing seven of eight subject objectives after Minnesota’s two-minute drills. He missed a 41-yarder large left, however he was good from 50, 54, and 58 yards.
  • Alexander Mattison had a pleasant landing run on a counter play from the 10-yard line. Fellow working again Kene Nwangwu, freshly again from a leg damage, broke free after a troublesome run and made his approach down the fitting sideline.
  • Zach Davidson made a few grabs, doubtless solidifying his standing because the Vikings’ No. 3 tight finish. In the meantime, receiver Trishton Jackson additionally caught just a few balls. Minnesota doesn’t have a whole lot of WR depth, so it is going to be attention-grabbing to see if Jackson can push his approach onto the roster.
  • Heart Garrett Bradbury continued to wrestle, getting pushed again into the pocket on a number of performs. Defensive deal with T.Y. McGill simply beat Bradbury on a run play, assembly Dalvin Cook dinner within the backfield simply as he took a handoff from Cousins. Chris Reed performed because the backup heart.
  • The Vikings are staging a punt returner competitors, and Ihmir Smith-Marsette acquired the primary rep. No. 3 large receiver Okay.J. Osborn was subsequent in line, adopted by rookie wideout Jalen Nailor.
  • Safeties Josh Metellus and Myles Dorn, who noticed extra reps with Cine out, each made stable performs across the purpose line. Metellus broke up a move on the 5-yard line, whereas Dorn nearly got here down with an interception in the long run zone. Veteran cornerback Patrick Peterson additionally broke up a move in the long run zone, however he most likely ought to’ve been known as for move interference on the play.

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