One Vikings Rookie Has Won a Starting Role
Kwesi Adofo-Mensah did not receive much love after his first NFL draft. In fact, some pundits and fans absolutely railed against him for the trades he made. However, it turns out that at least one of those rookies has won a starting role.
When the Vikings released the video of the draft war room before selecting Ed Ingram, coach Kevin O’Connell made a bold statement. He said on camera that there was a significant drop-off in talent at the guard position after Ingram.
Clearly, KAM and KOC had it in their minds that they needed to improve the offensive line. Now their first major investment in that position group appears to be paying off.
Ed Ingram has not outright won the starting right guard job. However, it certainly appears to be trending in that direction. This should not come as a surprise to anyone.
The Vikings needed a solid right guard to hold up in the passing game. To be honest, all Vikings fans have been dreaming of a guard who doesn’t get absolutely wrecked like Jesse Davis (playing left guard) in this rep against the Niners in practice.
The good news is that Ed Ingram is exactly that. After watching him play in the first preseason game, you could see his pass protection stand out like a man among boys.
Yes, he was playing against the 2s. However, he stands out if you watch his reps and compare them to the rest of the backup offensive linemen. He can maintain the point of contact and wins the leverage battle. This is music to the ears of Vikings fans.
However, he did miss a few blocks in the run game. Although, in today’s game, I am willing to deal with a few missed blocks in the run game not to give up multiple sacks per game.
When Will the Vikings Officially Announce Ed Ingram Won the Battle?
We should expect this announcement to come this week when the second unofficial depth chart is released. After last week’s showing against the Raiders, Ingram played better than Davis. Now, it is reported that Ed Ingram is taking all of the first team reps at the joint team practices against the Niners.
The first sign that a player will be the starter is when they begin to take some first-team reps. This started last week before the first preseason game for Ed Ingram. Although, Jesse Davis still had the job for the first preseason game.
However, Ingram is taking all the first team reps now. This is a clear sign that he has won that job. We will wait to see if that holds later this week, but we shouldn’t expect anything else.
While we want to be excited that we have a good guard for once, we still need to temper our expectations. Sure, it appears that Ingram will be solid in pass protection, but we need to see how this plays out in the regular season. He will also need to improve his run blocking a bit to round out his skillset.
Regardless, let’s get a little hyped that one rookie appears to have won his position battle. This is a great first step for this front office and hopefully translates to on-field success.
Mitch Massman is a life-long Vikings fan. His first heartbreak was the 1998 NFC championship game. His full-time job is as an economic development professional in rural Minnesota. He fantasizes about the Vikings winning a Super Bowl one day, but until then he will write about the Vikings. Follow him on Twitter @skol_vikings3