VikingBuzz BLOG: 9/12

The personnel department for the Vikings is always keeping its short list of players up-to-date. They had five prospects in for workouts on Tuesday, all with some logical fit for the schemes the Vikings deploy.

The Vikings had five players in for workouts on Tuesday.  All were in training camp with other teams and were released on the final roster cuts prior to last weekend’s regular-season opener.

In for a look were LB Jordan Beck (Falcons, on Monday), WR Marcus Maxwell, SS Jamaal Fudge (Jaguars), WR Eric Fowler (Steelers) and QB Gibran Hamdan.

Beck was a third-round pick by the Falcons in 2005.  He suffered a high ankle sprain in training camp and then broke his foot, landing on injured reserve in 2005.  Last season he played in 15 games, mostly on special teams.  He was waived by Atlanta on 9/3/07.  He also worked out for the Bengals on 9/6/07.

Beck (6023, 233, 4.45-4.69) is an intriguing prospect with impressive athletic ability, range and speed.  He has great tools, especially for the Cover-2 scheme the Vikings deploy.  Injuries undermined his efforts with the Falcons and he still needs to prove he can make the jump to the NFL, but he possesses terrific ability and could at the very least develop as a good backup and key player on special teams.

His workout numbers were very impressive coming out of Cal Poly:  Including a 1.58 10-yard dash, 2.65 20-yard dash, 4.45 40-yard dash, 42-inch vertical jump, 10’9” broad jump, 4.10 20-yard shuttle, 11.25 60-yard shuttle, 6.92 three-cone drill, with 25 reps at 225 pounds and a very solid Wonderlic score of 27.

Here’s the wikipedia entry on Beck.

Maxwell was originally a seventh-round draft pick by the San Francisco 49ers in 2005; he played in 4 games as a rookie.  He spent last season on their practice squad and played in NFL Europa this summer.

Maxwell (6032, 205, 4.42-4.60) is a big target with good hands and some run-after-the-catch ability.  He jumps well (40 ½-inch vertical, 10’9” broad jump) and can go up and compete for the ball.  He lacks great suddenness or truly special qualities but has the look of a West Coast Offense receiver.

Here’s a little more background on Maxwell , who would also be eligible for the practice squad.

Fudge (5093, 192, 4.44-4.53) was originally signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2006, he spent time on the practice squad and was active for 6 games as a rookie.  Fudge didn’t make the final cut this year.

He is undersized for safety but has some Dwight Smith-type qualities.  He struggles when isolated in man-to-man coverage and is more of a zone defender against the pass.  Despite his marginal size, he’s a solid run defender and an overall fit for the team’s scheme.  He might be a practice squad candidate if the Bears sign Tyler Everett as has been speculated.

Here are links to his NFL.com profile and his Clemson bio.

Fowler (6027, 198, 4.48-4.58) went to camp with the Pittsburgh Steelers this summer as an undrafted rookie free agent from Grand Valley State.  Like Maxwell, he has nice size and some of those WCO run-after-the catch skills.

He played heavier in college (at 215 pounds) but worked with a professional trainer after his college career, has lost weight and improved his speed.  In the school’s pro day he ran a 4.43 forty indoors in front of pro scouts.

Here’s more than 3 minutes of YouTube highlights of Fowler, and here’s his GVSU bio.

Hamdan (6043, 220, 4.95) has spent time with the Washington Redskins (seventh-round pick in 2003), Seattle Seahawks, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle again, the Miami Dolphins, as well as a couple stints in the NFL Europe.

Hamdan’s best chance might have been with the Dolphins, where he was playing for his college coach, Cam Cameron, once again.  The Vikings also have a couple scouts (George Paton and Scott Kuhn) who came from Miami, so they would be familiar with Hamdan, as well.

Vikings leadership council

Vikings coach Brad Childress did not name permanent captains for the entire season, like many teams have done this season.  But he has once again formed a council of veterans to meet with regularly.

They are:  Matt Birk, Steve Hutchinson, Ben Leber, Tony Richardson, Dwight Smith, Bobby Wade, Pat Williams and Antoine Winfield.

Ex-Vikings news

Former Vikings tight end Richard Owens, who was released after two seasons in Minnesota, was signed by the St. Louis Rams.  Owens, a tight end/H-back, played for Scott Linehan both with the Minnesota Vikings and at the University of Louisville.

Cornerback Dovonte Edwards was waived by the New York Giants last Saturday when they activated Michael Strahan.

Fred Smoot started at cornerback, ahead of Shawn Springs, for the Washington Redskins last week.

Ex-Viking running back Artose Pinner was active for the Falcons but did not play against the Vikings.

Tight end Stephen Spach, who went to training camp with the Vikings this summer, worked out with the New England Patriots on Monday.

Linebacker David Herron was released by the Patriots, who re-signed veteran Chad Brown to replace him on their roster.

Other stories:

>Tackles clearing the way for Henderson
>Coaches liked what they saw from Jackson
>Moore likely to be active this week
>Spotlight on rookies Peterson, Johnson
>Vikings reportedly pursued Caldwell
>Greenway, Jackson learn on the go
>Childress bounces back from rocky freshman year
>Childress growing into Vikings’ job
>Peterson shines in Vikings debut
>Vikings game ball:  Adrian Peterson
>Sacks help Vikings bag first victory
>Vikings move up in power rankings
>Henson finds another league for tryout

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