One theme of the offseason in Minnesota has been Vikings players sharing good feelings about the change in head coaches from Mike Zimmer to Kevin O’Connell and wide receiver Adam Thielen has jumped on that bandwagon.
Thielen dealt with an ankle injury that caused him to miss several games late last season, but said in an interview with KMSP that he has no lingering issues with the injury. He added that he feels fresh and energetic since O’Connell has taken the reins because “the culture that’s been created here is just a breath of fresh air.”
“It’s been great. When you hear about the news, you kind of look back at the track record and you look back at what they did, and you’re excited, right? But then you get in here, you start learning the system and you start getting on the field,” Thielen said. “Really, when you get on the field and you start running through stuff, you’re like ‘man, this is fun. This is exciting.’ When I talk about a breath of fresh air and kind of rejuvenation, it’s because when you get out here, it’s like stuff makes sense and it’s exciting. We have a great team, we have a great locker room, we have great coaches, we have great leadership. So, we just got to make sure we keep working hard and keep gaining ground because there is a lot of learning. So there’s a lot of extra work, a lot of details we got to focus on right now that will help us in the long run.”
The Vikings have finished outside of the playoff picture the last two seasons and the clearest sign that they’ve really turned the page will come once that drought is put to rest. If the good feelings of the offseason prove sustainable, that could come as soon as this year.