Vikings first-round pick Trae Waynes has had a rough time in the team’s first two preseason games, but it’s not causing too much worry for the team’s defensive coordinator.
There have been many highly regarded cornerbacks that needed some time before they were able to make a successful transition from college to the professional ranks and George Edwards believes Waynes is going through that process right now. As a result, Edwards thinks that patience and continued learning will get Waynes where he needs to go as a player.
“We think he’s right on course,” Edwards said, via the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. “Everybody is looking for an immediate impact out of him, but … there are a lot of different things that go mentally with the corner position other than just lining up and playing man coverage on a guy. So the adjustment from pro to college, the different rules, how far you can put your hands on him down the field, all those different things weigh into the equation. … I think he went out the first game and learned something; I think he went out this past week, he learned something. As long as he keeps learning and keeps competing to get better, we think he’s right where we need him to be.”
Coach Mike Zimmer said that the team has decided not to use Waynes in the slot this season, saying it was “overzealous” to try to get the rookie up to speed at two places during camp. That decision will allow him to concentrate on playing outside, where he’ll be behind starters Terence Newman and Xavier Rhodes while working to gain the expertise he’ll need to thrive as a pro.