When one thinks of the dog days of training camp, one of the first factors that gets mentioned is heat/humidity. The players are sweating it out on the blazing July and August sun. But, like the entire spring and summer of 2013, nothing has been certain or expected.
During the first two days of training camp, at times the weather was downright blustery and more in keeping with an October practice than the opening of training camp.
While a warm-up is expected for the first full week of training camp, the weather isn't expected to get oppressively hot by a long stretch. The forecast for Monday calls for party cloudy skies with a high of 81 degrees, which could end up by the high-water mark for the rest of the week. There is the possibility of rain Tuesday and Wednesday, but the later part of the week is expected to be sunny with highs barely making it to 80 degrees.
Anyone who has spent any time in Mankato during a typical training camp can attest that the temperatures and the humidity can get pretty brutal and, even those with a decent summer tan find themselves burning under the heat of the southern Minnesota sun. Like so much about the spring and summer that wasn't in Minnesota in 2013, it would appear as though the strange chill that has found itself over Minnesota almost non-stop since April will at least keep temperatures bearable through the first week of training camp.
Players are still taking the pill that monitor their body core temperature, but the monitoring doesn't need to be as intense so far.
Not that anyone will be complaining – temperatures around 80 are ideal for most people – but as the players start to prepare their bodies for the pounding they will take over the next five months, they won't be sweating it out as in late July and early August as is the norm and Leslie Frazier said he would actually like something a little warmer for conditioning purposes.
The Vikings didn't practice Sunday. They will return for two practices today – a walkthrough practice from 10-11:30 a.m. in Blakeslee Stadium and an afternoon practice (with pads expected) from 2:30-4:45 p.m. The scheduled group autograph session Monday will include the Vikings offensive linemen.
Guard Jonathan Cooper, the seventh pick in the draft to Arizona, signed Sunday, dropped the remaining unsigned first-rounders to two – Jets cornerback Dee Milliner (No. 9) and Titans guard Chance Warmack (No. 10).
The injuries continued to mount up in the NFL Sunday. Broncos center Dan Koppen, expected to be the centerpiece of Denver's offensive line, was lost for the season with an ACL tear. Miami wide receiver Armon Binns was fighting for a backup role until a torn ACL and MCL Sunday ended his 2013 season before it could begin.
Dennis Pitta, the Baltimore Ravens tight end who was lost for the season Saturday with a hip injury, was replaced on the Ravens roster by former Viking Visanthe Shiancoe.
Another former Vikings tight end found work Sunday. Mickey Shuler, a seventh-round pick of the Vikings in 2010, he been with Miami, Oakland and Buffalo since then. He was waived by the Bills Saturday and was claimed by the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.
Dwayne Bowe, who was reportedly in awful shape at Larry Fitzerald's conditioning camp last month, finally was activated to the Chiefs roster Sunday. He had missed the first few days for failing the team physical, which was blamed on a virus.
John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.
The weather felt more like fall in the first week of training camp and only a slight warm-up is in store this week. While the players appreciate it, Leslie Frazier is hoping for a little warmer days ahead for conditioning purposes.
While players appreciate cooler temperatures, Frazier is hoping for a warm-up for conditioning.