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Adrian Peterson impressed by Jerick McKinnon

Jerick McKinnon AP

The Vikings lost a reliable backup running back this offseason when Toby Gerhart signed with the Jaguars as a free agent, but it doesn’t sound like Adrian Peterson is too worried about who will be spelling him this season.

Minnesota drafted Jerick McKinnon out of Georgia Southern in the third round in this year’s draft and says that he’s been “learning from the best in the game” since he started working alongside Peterson. Peterson has liked what McKinnon has done with the lessons.

“He’s pretty impressive and there’s not too many guys who impress me like that, especially rookies coming in,” Peterson said, via the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. “He’s been able to do some real good things in the offense, picking it up well and just his running style.”

Peterson probably isn’t going to cede much more time to McKinnon than he ceded to Gerhart, but McKinnon should have impact on the team outside of running the ball. McKinnon says he’s patterned some of his game after Reggie Bush and it looks like he has a chance to earn time as both a returner and a pass catcher out of the backfield. If he’s effective in those roles, the loss of Gerhart shouldn’t prove to be a particularly big one for the Vikings.

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63 Responses to “Adrian Peterson impressed by Jerick McKinnon”
  1. wsperegoiv says: Jul 3, 2014 9:23 AM

    I’ve heard nothing but good things so far about him and the entire draft class in general.

  2. 700levelvet says: Jul 3, 2014 9:31 AM

    Did professional football even exist before Peterson got drafted?

  3. bassplucker says: Jul 3, 2014 9:31 AM

    These are things that All-Pro veterans say about kids who have no chance of making the team, much less competing for their own position. When a rookie comes in who’s a legitimate threat, the incumbent veteran tends to stay mum.

  4. ariani1985 says: Jul 3, 2014 9:34 AM

    With the exception of Matt forte I wouldn’t let any other RB in the NFC North even start at my local high school team. I think our little sisters to the East are still trying to get Ahman Green out of retirement!!!!

  5. bordner says: Jul 3, 2014 9:39 AM

    Well, that’s different – usually, all we hear is that Adrian Peterson is impressed with Adrian Peterson.

  6. soflovikes says: Jul 3, 2014 9:39 AM

    The…. BEST…. Running back tandem in the LEAGUE…. Norv Turner is drooling….

  7. whatjusthapped says: Jul 3, 2014 9:41 AM

    You know what impresses me most about McKinnon, he’s probably the best QB the Vikings have on their roster. He started more games in college at QB than he did at RB and yet the Vikings spent a top 100 pick on the guy because he ran a fast 40 time.

    Spielman is showing his versatility, he can waste picks in other than the first round.

  8. reesesteel23 says: Jul 3, 2014 9:46 AM

    The incumbent veteran knows his job will never be at risk so the incumbent veteran has nothing to lose by giving McKinnon his props.

  9. doctorrustbelt says: Jul 3, 2014 9:49 AM

    Minnesota Vikings would improve if they traded/cut low character, non-leader adrian peterson.

  10. fwippel says: Jul 3, 2014 9:58 AM

    McKinnon is going to contribute immediately, and this is going to be fun to watch.

    Not many “experts” are giving the Vikings much of a shot to win more than 5-6 games this year, and perhaps with good reason. However, with seven first round draft picks since 2012, and an improved coaching staff, this team is poised to make a move this year. McKinnon will be another break-away threat on an offense that already has Peterson and Patterson.

    The only thing holding this team back is the QB position, and at least this year, our new HC and OC won’t be wasting any more time on the Christian Ponder experiment.

  11. mnjoemama says: Jul 3, 2014 10:05 AM

    He had the 32 bench press reps and ran a 4.3. He’s a freak ! Skol vikes….. Ball game nation

  12. Aaron Rodgers Has Tiny Hands says: Jul 3, 2014 10:06 AM

    Remember the Vikings when you do your fantasy football league draft, especially if you’re in a dynasty league. Peterson, Patterson, Rudolph, Jennings, Cassel, Bridgewater, McKinnon…Let’s go!

  13. coldwater32301 says: Jul 3, 2014 10:08 AM

    That’s like Joe Montana saying something great about Steve Young…Indeed…

  14. GenXJay says: Jul 3, 2014 10:18 AM

    Jerick is no Jonathan Franklin. And that is a good thing.

  15. conormacleod says: Jul 3, 2014 10:22 AM

    Gerhart wasn’t much of a loss at all. If AP is hurt, it doesn’t matter who the second string guy is. If AP is healthy, it doesn’t matter as well. AP will get his 1,500 yards. The difference is Norv. Passing will be greatly improved.

  16. ragnarthegreat says: Jul 3, 2014 10:40 AM

    We had a great versatile athlete in Joe Webb. Not a full time QB, WR or running back but a heck of a talent and we could never figure out what to do with him. I hope Norv Turner will know what to do with this kid. You have to be creative with these guys and we haven’t been in the past.

  17. beerbratscheese says: Jul 3, 2014 10:42 AM

    About this same time last year, Greg Jennings bragged about how impressed he was with Christian Ponder. Just saying.

  18. djvh2 says: Jul 3, 2014 10:43 AM

    Green Bay needs to get a stronger rear view mirror so they can see the Vikings.

  19. ktm300xcwe says: Jul 3, 2014 10:49 AM

    You know what impresses me most about McKinnon, he’s probably the best QB the Vikings have on their roster. He started more games in college at QB than he did at RB and yet the Vikings spent a top 100 pick on the guy because he ran a fast 40 time.

    Spielman is showing his versatility, he can waste picks in other than the first round.
    __________________________________Yep, better than Teddy Bridgewater. When was the last time the Packers had a first round pick not be a bust?

  20. kudzuwish says: Jul 3, 2014 10:53 AM

    Mckinnon will be starting by mid-season. When the Vikings start 0-5, Peterson will demand a trade to a contender.

    Can you blame him? He’s already on his third head coach. At this point in his career is he willing to be on another rebuilding team?

  21. coachkilla6 says: Jul 3, 2014 10:55 AM

    Just another 3rd stringer on a roster chock full of backups. The Vikings have 1, maybe 2 players that could start for another NFL team (AP (for one last season) and whoever their Kicker is). Truth.

    #skol

    Sadly
    Keeping
    0
    Lombardi’s

  22. djvh2 says: Jul 3, 2014 10:57 AM

    “When was the last time the Packers had a first round pick not be a bust?”

    And yet they win the division almost every year. If GB can solve that problem, look out!

  23. stellarperformance says: Jul 3, 2014 11:10 AM

    By the look of the photo, this guy also has very small Bridgewater-type hands. Maybe that’s why he was converted to a RB.

  24. crownofthehelmet says: Jul 3, 2014 11:21 AM

    AP is old enough to be this dude’s father. Actually, there’s a reasonable chance he is.

  25. Aaron Rodgers Has Tiny Hands says: Jul 3, 2014 11:32 AM

    The quarterback and coaching staff have disguised the improvement this team has made through the draft in recent years. Now that they have what appears to be an excellent coaching staff, a competent veteran quarterback, and a rookie with a ton of potential, people are going to notice that the Vikings have accumulated a lot of talent. They still need to fill a couple of positions and add more depth, but they’re hardly one of the worst teams in the league, as Packer fans keep wishing they were.

  26. tokyosandblaster says: Jul 3, 2014 11:43 AM

    Can he play every position on defense? Because the worst defense in the league, losing their best defensive player, isn’t going to keep up with the vastly improved teams in the division.

  27. macneil4025 says: Jul 3, 2014 11:44 AM

    Vikings=Super Bowl, you heard it here first! Skol

  28. purplezimmerpride says: Jul 3, 2014 12:05 PM

    This may give a tiny bump to our NFC North worst offense, but does nothing for our NFC North worst Defense.

  29. lerch77 says: Jul 3, 2014 12:07 PM

    McKinnon > McCoy :-D

  30. purpleguy says: Jul 3, 2014 12:07 PM

    If AP doesn’t block better in passing situations, the rookie will probably get plenty of time. Then again, when playing the Pack with a 300lb out-of-position slow OLB (Peppers), a plodding poor tackling top ten 1st round bust at MLB (Hawk), and a one-dimensional pass rusher at OLB (CMIII), there will be plenty of opportunities for Vikes’ RBs to catch passes out of the backfield at least two times a year.

  31. djvh2 says: Jul 3, 2014 12:12 PM

    “Vikings=Super Bowl, you heard it here first! Skol”

    You have to give it up for Vikings fans. Every year their hopes are up, usually to be crushed early, but sometimes the hope intensifies as they start to really believe they have a chance, only be crushed on a grander scale (4 SB losses, Gary Anderson, Favre, etc). But they never waver, they are delusional every year, and they nothing seems to get them down, not even reality.

  32. lnfinite says: Jul 3, 2014 12:30 PM

    Nice that a backup is getting praise from a starter……………………..

  33. beerbratscheese says: Jul 3, 2014 12:36 PM

    When was the last time the Packers had a first round pick not be a bust?

    You mean in general, or ones that can’t be blamed on the GM due to injuries occurring after he was drafted? If it’s not injury-related, I’d have to go back to Ahmad Carroll in 2004.

  34. beerbratscheese says: Jul 3, 2014 12:38 PM

    Shoot, really didn’t answer the above correctly, but obviously, I meant the last first rounder that was a bust, and not not be a bust. But I’m sure most of you are smart enough to figure that out.

  35. ariani1985 says: Jul 3, 2014 12:52 PM

    Green bay and first round busts go together like bees and honey!

  36. ragnarthemagnificent says: Jul 3, 2014 12:57 PM

    He is an interesting player given his versatility. Put the ball in his hands and lets see what he can do – SKOL!

  37. Frazier28/7 says: Jul 3, 2014 1:12 PM

    3 weeks til Mankato!

  38. wafflestomp says: Jul 3, 2014 1:17 PM

    The Vikings and NFL Championships go together like oil and water!

  39. Aaron Rodgers Has Tiny Hands says: Jul 3, 2014 1:47 PM

    Did somebody just say the Packers haven’t had a first round bust since 2004? Maybe you can use the injury excuse for some, but you can’t for Justin Harrell. He was known to be injury prone before he was drafted, and nobody thought he was worth a first round pick even if he were healthy. Also, nobody could think AJ Hawk was worth the #5 pick or BJ Raji was worth the #9 pick.

  40. ariani1985 says: Jul 3, 2014 1:47 PM

    Green Bay and losing in the first round of the playoffs go together like day and night!!!

    #automatic

  41. SneezingNinja says: Jul 3, 2014 2:17 PM

    Vikings appear to have all the right pieces to make a run at the playoffs this year. Hopefully we got the right guy at QB to help take us there.

  42. tokyosandblaster says: Jul 3, 2014 2:55 PM

    Let’s be clear: the only people thinking the Vikings can make the playoffs are Vikings fans.

    Not even the Vikings coaches and players are that moronic.

  43. puckthefackers says: Jul 3, 2014 2:58 PM

    Another story about a Vikings player with tons of garbage comments from Packer fans.

    Must be terrible to be more concerned with whether or not another team does poorly than you are with your own “team” doing well. But, that’s the reality of being a Packer fan.

  44. Aaron Rodgers Has Tiny Hands says: Jul 3, 2014 4:11 PM

    Bleacher Report predicted the Vikings to go 12-4 and win the division. I think that’s a bit optimistic but there’s an example of a non-Viking fan who thinks the Vikings can make the playoffs. Just sayin’.

  45. bobnelsonjr says: Jul 3, 2014 4:38 PM

    1) The vikings desperately needed a back that can play in passing situations.

    2) Given his history at QB, one wonders how good he will be at helping the O-line block.

    3) With their bottom 6 QB situation this kid might attempt some Halfback option passes to generate a little offense.

    4) He should be on the field for about 10 offensive snaps a game.

    None of the above is really any indication of achieving a .500 season.

    Yet for over 30 consecutive years every July and August you hear viking followers predict Super Bowl for them.

    Why not do as Jared Allen advised last season and “embrace the suck?”

  46. pkrlvr says: Jul 3, 2014 4:40 PM

    To the guy laughing about GB running backs I’d like to point out that AP ran for 1266 yards last year. Our ROOKIE of the year ran for 1178. Now that’s funny.

  47. pkrlvr says: Jul 3, 2014 4:41 PM

    Puck, check out any packers thread and you’ll see much worse from your side. These packer troll posts are tame by comparison….

  48. ariani1985 says: Jul 3, 2014 5:19 PM

    Yeah these packer peasants are easy to put in place!

  49. Kevin Lanflisi's Rosebud says: Jul 3, 2014 7:04 PM

    By the look of the photo, this guy also has very small Bridgewater-type hands. Maybe that’s why he was converted to a RB.

    ———————

    I’ve never seen anybody so enamored by another’s hands.

  50. Kevin Lanflisi's Rosebud says: Jul 3, 2014 7:08 PM

    To the guy laughing about GB running backs I’d like to point out that AP ran for 1266 yards last year. Our ROOKIE of the year ran for 1178. Now that’s funny.

    ——————————

    Not really funny. Because anybody with the slightest bit of football knowledge knows that if Peterson faced 6 and 7 in the box every play, like Lacy saw, he probably would have been close to 2000 yds again. If Lacy faced 8 and 9 in the box every play, like Peterson saw, he probably would have been close to 800 yds.

  51. vickspuppy says: Jul 3, 2014 7:47 PM

    Bleacher Report predicted the Vikings to go 12-4 and win the division. I think that’s a bit optimistic but there’s an example of a non-Viking fan who thinks the Vikings can make the playoffs. Just sayin’.
    ____________________________________

    As a contributing editor to BR, I can assure you that we have never predicted the Vikings to go 12-4. As a matter of fact, we have them at 12/1 to win the division. In contrast, GB is 4/5 to win the NFCN. Minnesota may see 5 wins this season, enough to remain in last place…again.

  52. djvh2 says: Jul 3, 2014 8:11 PM

    “if Peterson faced 6 and 7 in the box every play, like Lacy saw, he probably would have been close to 2000 yds again. If Lacy faced 8 and 9 in the box every play, like Peterson saw, he probably would have been close to 800 yds.”

    Except that Rodgers was out for 7 games and most of an 8th game. That’s when Lacy got the bulk of his yardage, and it was against 8 man fronts. Obviously he’s not as talented as Peterson, but he is a very good RB. Another Viking fan delusion.
    As a caring person, I’ll warn Viking fans not to get your hopes up again.

  53. vikingspride says: Jul 3, 2014 8:23 PM

    Crazy combine numbers and props from the best back in the game, hope this translates to NFL stud.

  54. sonofad says: Jul 3, 2014 8:44 PM

    Will the Vikings be eliminated by Halloween again this year?

  55. puckthefackers says: Jul 4, 2014 3:53 AM

    pkrlvr says:
    Jul 3, 2014 4:41 PM
    Puck, check out any packers thread and you’ll see much worse from your side. These packer troll posts are tame by comparison….
    ————
    I have, and that’s not remotely true.

  56. puckthefackers says: Jul 4, 2014 3:59 AM

    To the guy laughing about GB running backs I’d like to point out that AP ran for 1266 yards last year. Our ROOKIE of the year ran for 1178. Now that’s funny.

    Congratulations. Your guy needed five more carries to run for 80 fewer yards and average about half a yard per carry less than a guy that missed two games and sees more defenders in the box on average than any back in the NFL.

    Yay!

  57. allday296 says: Jul 4, 2014 4:03 AM

    I am always amazed at how many GB fans feel the need to post on MN stories. It seems almost every story gets 100 comments. Be happy with playoffs every year and a SB win. Why so much time involved in ripping a team who has never won it? It appears(and is) weak. I mean AP can’t even comment on the draft class without you guys looking for an agenda. We can’t say much right now but obviously either can you. The misspellings really represent the group. If the packers had a history like the Vikes, most of you wouldn’t even know what a football is. Just wait till they win( if they ever) , it will be the biggest party in the world.

  58. unmercifulone says: Jul 4, 2014 4:13 AM

    Below are the betting odds on the Minnesota Vikings and the Green Bay Packers I found at online sportsbooks. Say what you want, but these guys are in the business to figure the odds on which team will win and which one won’t. Statistically, the Packers are slightly favored with a 9-7 season to the Vikings 8-8 season… which is about were I (and anyone honest enough to admit it) would place both teams. As usual, the Vikings/Packers rivalry goes on.

    Odds on the Minnesota Vikings 2014 Regular Season Total Wins (at Bookmaker)
    Over 9 (-105)
    Under 9 (-125)

    Odds on the Minnesota Vikings to win the 2015 Super Bowl
    +2100 (at Bookmaker)
    +2500 (at betED)

    Odds on the Minnesota Vikings to win NFC
    +880 (at Bookmaker)
    +1200 (at betED)

    Odds on the Minnesota Vikings to win NFC North
    +160 (at Bookmaker)
    +135 (at betED)

    Odds on the Green Bay Packers 2014 Regular Season Total Wins (at Bookmaker)
    Over 8½ (-125)
    Under 8½ (-105)

    Odds on the Green Bay Packers to win the 2015 Super Bowl
    +2100 (at Bookmaker)
    +3000 (at betED)

    Odds on the Green Bay Packers to win NFC
    +850 (at Bookmaker)
    +1200 (at betED)

    Odds on the Green Bay Packers to win NFC North
    +160 (at Bookmaker)
    +150 (at betED)

  59. kmossg says: Jul 4, 2014 5:06 AM

    djvh2 says:
    Jul 3, 2014 12:12 PM
    “Vikings=Super Bowl, you heard it here first! Skol”

    You have to give it up for Vikings fans. Every year their hopes are up, usually to be crushed early, but sometimes the hope intensifies as they start to really believe they have a chance, only be crushed on a grander scale (4 SB losses, Gary Anderson, Favre, etc). But they never waver, they are delusional every year, and they nothing seems to get them down, not even reality.

    ———————
    I call that dedication, pretty easy to be a Packer fan with Favre and then Rodgers. At least the older ones have a little character.

  60. tonyc920 says: Jul 4, 2014 10:28 AM

    Viking fan troll posts usually get pretty darn funny around this time of the year. I’ll be watching every Packers story for those “Vikings r Super Bowl Bound” or “Packers Finish in Last” posts. Too bad we have to wait until Oct 2nd for the 1st game between these 2. I can see a 3-1 team against a 1-3 team for that game. You figure it out !!

  61. puckthefackers says: Jul 4, 2014 10:59 AM

    Viking fan troll posts usually get pretty darn funny around this time of the year. I’ll be watching every Packers story for those “Vikings r Super Bowl Bound” or “Packers Finish in Last” posts.
    ————
    And if you want to find out what Packer “fans” are thinking, just find the PFT posts about the Vikings. That’s where you’ll find them, because Packer “fans” actually care far more about the Vikings than they do about their own “team.”

  62. djvh2 says: Jul 4, 2014 12:04 PM

    “I call that dedication, pretty easy to be a Packer fan with Favre and then Rodgers. At least the older ones have a little character.”

    True that it’s been easy to be a fan of this team. There is a difference between reality and dedication though. Packer fans are always loyal and dedicated. I’ve been a fan since being born near GB when Lombardi started. I’ve seen great and terrible. The fans have been supportive for both. Every game has been a sellout for over 50 years, and the waiting list for season tickets was growing even before the 1990s (25 years of mostly terrible). The difference is that Viking fans get in your face and gloat even when the reality is that they are terrible. Going to a Packer game is more like going to watch your son play a high school game, where people are generally happy to see their team and respectful to everyone (even Bears fans). Most GB fans realize that without Rodgers we are at best average, and probably down there with the worst teams (Jax, Oak, MN). Viking fans (not all, but many) are making ridiculous predictions every year. That is what GB fans are responding to on these blogs.

  63. luccabrazzi says: Jul 8, 2014 4:32 PM

    I won’t comment like I’ve ever seen this mckinnon kid play cuz I haven’t. The highlight film does look exciting though. To bad they don’t have lowlight films to compare against.
    Toby and AP are both downhill runners. So I could see the rook having an impact because his style is opposite AP. By definition he’s a true change of pace back. Hopefully it works out for them. Always fun to see a new playmaker in the league.

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