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Vikings move Everson Griffen back to defensive end

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The Vikings wanted to see what Everson Griffen could do as an outside linebacker this offseason so they shifted him there for the start of camp.

Experimentation time has come to an end and Griffen is heading back to defensive end. Coach Leslie Frazier explained that Griffen wasn’t going to beat out other players for time at outside linebacker, so the team thought it best to move him back to a familiar role up front.

“We saw enough of him at linebacker where we feel like this is going to be better for him,” Frazier said, via Tom Pelissero of ESPN1500.com. “We talked to him Sunday night when we got back, and he agrees that it’s better for him to focus on that position, and Erin (Henderson) and Marvin Mitchell are really battling for that spot. They’re doing a good job competing.”

Minnesota will now need to figure out another way to get Griffen on the field so they can take advantage of his pass rushing abilities. Griffen had four sacks and 14 pressures while playing a quarter of the team’s snaps last season, which was all the playing time available behind Jared Allen and Brian Robison. The team has talked about resting the starters more this year, but those suggestions can sometimes disappear when teams are faced with actual game situations instead of idealized rotations drawn up months before games get underway.

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9 Responses to “Vikings move Everson Griffen back to defensive end”
  1. lbpackfan says: Aug 14, 2012 10:22 AM

    The beginning of the end.

  2. taintedsaints2009 says: Aug 14, 2012 10:30 AM

    this guy is one of the very, very few potential stars the vikings have. he should be playing opposite jared allen. brian robison sucks. this griffen is a monster in the making. just give him the reps. he had 4 sacks last year and barely played. he also is great on special teams. i don’t understand why this team continues to sideline their best talent: Harvin, joe webb (receiver) and griffen.

  3. purpleguy says: Aug 14, 2012 10:55 AM

    Griffen has been a pleasant surprise, and since Robison has a tendency to wear down as the season progresses, Griffen will get plenty of reps. Mostly, I’m just happy he hasn’t been arrested for a year.

  4. rooney24 says: Aug 14, 2012 10:55 AM

    Local paper reported that he could still see some limited time at OLB in pass situations. So, he may still get a chance to rush the passer from that spot. Hope he gets a chance to contribute, as he seems to come up with plays when given the chance.

  5. sterling7 says: Aug 14, 2012 11:31 AM

    Let’s not be ludicrous. As a I am Viking for lifer-if you saw the preseason game on Friday night my mother could’ve run past that defense, it was pathetic. Yes I know the starters (over 30 years old) didn’t play but there’s no excuse for that carnage. Everson is a player and will blossom soon-trust me!

  6. fwippel says: Aug 14, 2012 11:43 AM

    If Griffen stays out of trouble, he could end up supplanting Robison before year’s end. Robision started out well last year, but didn’t stand out much during the last ten games.

  7. spartan822 says: Aug 14, 2012 12:04 PM

    Smart move by the Vikings to admit when an experiment is not working, rather than try to force a square peg in a round hole.

  8. hugejazz says: Aug 14, 2012 1:28 PM

    Robison had 8 sacks last year. Not shabby for first year starter. If they platoon like they say they will Griffen will get on the field. The biggest concern to me are the linebackers and nose tackle. Greenway is the only decent reliable one and the Vikes have not found Pat Williams replacement yet.

  9. brewdogg says: Aug 14, 2012 3:03 PM

    As much as I like Robison, he can’t stand up to more than 20-25 plays a game. If Allen does get more rest this season, and given the way the other DEs looked on friday, Griffen will get plenty of snaps this year. I expect him to supplant Robison on the left side by season’s end.

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