Notebook: Patterson ‘might’ return kicks

Cordarrelle Patterson might return a kick or two for the first time this preseason on Saturday. Plus, get injury updates and other notes from Wednesday morning.

Cordarrelle Patterson could be back returning kickoffs – or at least one – for the first time this preseason after getting the first two games off from that duty.

Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said Patterson “might” return kicks on Saturday night against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium and indicated that will be part of Patterson’s duties in the regular season.

“We want our players to help us win football games any way we can,” Zimmer said when asked about Patterson returning kicks in the regular season. “We want to get the ball in those guys’ hands so you’ll see Cordarrelle back there.”

Last year, Patterson returned one kick in each of the first three preseason games, breaking off a 50-yarder in his first attempt and averaging 30 yards in his three attempts. During the regular season, he led the league with a 32.4-yard average and two touchdowns on 43 attempts.

“It matters, but I can’t say this week I’m going to do it and then coach pulls me out,” Patterson said. “But this week I feel I’m going to have an opportunity to get back there. If not, I’ll just wait ’til the Rams (for the regular-season opener).”

Patterson finished his rookie season becoming a bigger part of the offense – catching 45 passes for 469 yards – and he will be a starter at the beginning of the season this year with bigger things expected.

WEDNESDAY A.M. NOTES


  • Linebacker Chad Greenway will have his practice reps limited a bit more as he deals with a wrist injury. He had an MRI and X-rays on the wrist, Zimmer said,

    “It’s not a big deal,” Zimmer said. “… I just don’t want to irritate it more.”

    Greenway played with a broken wrist for much of the season last year, but Zimmer said it isn’t broken again.

  • Running back Adrian Peterson is dealing with a personal matter and wasn’t at practice Wednesday.

  • Others that won’t practice on Wednesday: DT Linval Joseph (calf), CB Jabari Price (arm or shoulder), LB Gerald Hodges (ankle) and LB Brandon Watts (leg).

  • Zimmer said he hasn’t told his quarterbacks yet what the plan is for playing time on Saturday. Zimmer anticipated a question dealing with the starting quarterback for the regular season and said he hasn’t made a decision yet.

    “It’s not really a date (to name) the quarterback,” he said. “It’s more like, ‘All right, well let’s do this.’ And then, ‘Let’s
    go.’”

    Special teams consultant Joe Marciano is expected to get more involved in the next week as he prepares to replace special teams coordinator Mike Priefer during his two- or three-game suspension for an anti-gay comment made in the presence of former punter Chris Kluwe.

    “As we get closer, (Marciano) is working on molding into exactly what we’re trying to do and his system and Mike’s system are very similar,” Zimmer said. “He’s in obviously all the meetings and everything in with Mike all the time. And he’s trying to learn the same terminology that Mike is using.”

  • With the middle linebacker expected to come off the field in the nickel defense, Chad Greenway will be wearing the helmet to communicate with the sideline on defense.

  • Safety Robert Blanton, making his first preseason appearance since injuring a hamstring, is expected to see a lot of snaps Saturday.

    “I haven’t seen him yet, so we’ll give him a lot of plays,” Zimmer said. “The rest of (the safeties), we’re going to try to split up the time the best we can. And sometimes, unfortunately, the situation – if we just had a scrimmage, we could kind of plot it all out, but sometimes when you’re playing against somebody, it’s a little more difficult with situations and personnel.”


    Tim Yotter is the publisher of 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.
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