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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Notebook: Cordarrelle Patterson says patience comes naturally


EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Jarius Wright knows a little about what Minnesota Vikings rookie receiver Cordarrelle Patterson is going through.

Maybe not to the extreme of a first-round pick, but Wright’s rookie role last season was that of a bench warmer, until receiver Percy Harvin was injured and he stepped in.

“It’s way different from last year, not knowing your role and if you’ll get to play a lot,” Wright said. “As a rookie, you don’t understand as much as you’d like.”

Along with fans and media, Patterson probably doesn’t understand why he’s played only 11 snaps in his first two NFL games after the Vikings gave up a group of draft picks to move back into the first round of April’s draft and snag him with the No. 29 overall pick.

Coach Leslie Frazier said on Monday the situation would be ‘rectified,’ especially after Patterson returned Sunday’s opening kickoff for a 105-yard touchdown.

“It really doesn’t matter how many plays you play, it’s what you do with them,” Patterson said. “I’m waiting patiently on my time.”

Patterson, 22, said part of his success on the football field can also be credited to patience. Often used in the screen game at the University of Tennessee, Patterson said that’s part of his recipe.

“Some of the guys aren’t patient, they like to get it and go,” Patterson said. “I’m a big guy, I’m patient. I like to rely on my blockers I got to help me out.”

“Patience is the key to success.”

Quarterback Christian Ponder chocked Patterson’s low snap count up to playing behind receiver Jerome Simpson, who leads the team with 189 receiver yards through two games.

However, Patterson replaced Simpson to start the second drive in Chicago and appeared to be getting involved earlier.

But he played just three snaps in each half.

“[Patterson] has got a great knack of making guys miss and finding holes and making plays with his legs,” Ponder said. “We’re going to continue to get him those balls and give him the ability to do so. Then he’ll keep developing his routes downfield. But again, Jerome [Simpson is] playing at such a high level, it’s hard to take him off the field.”

All Day a little tentative?

Running back Adrian Peterson hasn’t topped the 100-yard mark in a season opener since 2009.

That hasn’t stopped the NFL MVP from tearing apart the league, but on Sunday, Peterson said he’s been a little tentative so far to start 2013.

“I was a little hesitant today,” Peterson said after Sunday’s loss. “Wasn’t getting up in there. I kind of felt that way, I can’t do that. I have to come out, press these guys, force these guys to tackle me and on a couple plays I didn’t do that. Who knows what could’ve happened.”

Peterson fumbled away the Vikings first possession in the second half, his second lost fumble after a botched handoff from Ponder in the season opener.

Frazier said perhaps he has to teach Peterson to be a little patient.

“I don’t know if hesitancy is the word, [but] trying to make every run a 60-yard run, which is not always going to be the case,” Frazier said. “Sometimes, you’ve just got to get what’s there. And he’s been good at that and he’ll be better going forward.”

Getting settled

In wet and windy conditions at Soldier Field on Sunday, rookie punter Jeff Locke had his better of the two outings so far in his brief NFL career.

Locke booted three punts for a 56.7-yard average, up 12 yards from his debut at the Detroit Lions (in a dome). None of which were returnable for Bears’ return man Devin Hester.

“Definitely better than the first game,” Locke said. “Even my miss-hits were better hangtime and better location, kept it out of [Devin] Hester’s hands.”

Locke said he and the special teams unit went to the Metrodome on Wednesday morning to get the hang of kicking at home. Locke said it was the only time this week he’ll get over there before Sunday’s home opener against the Cleveland Browns.

“When the weather gets a little worse, we’ll be going more often,” Locke said.

Late hits

•Rookie linebacker Michael Mauti told that he’s hopeful that he’ll be activated this Sunday for the first time this season. Avid special teamer Rhett Ellison missed Wednesday’s practice with a hyperextended knee and Mauti may be in line for some work on those units.

•Receiver Greg Childs said he’s been able to practice with the team sparingly during his long rehab from a torn tendon in each knee that happened at the beginning of training camp in 2012. Childs is on the physically unable to perform list and is eligible to return after Week 6, at which point the Vikings have three weeks to decide to give him a roster spot, cut him or put him on IR.

•Linebacker Chad Greenway on his apparent slump that included a few missed tackles against the Bears: “Any player, as great or as bad a player as there is in this league, has gone through stretches where they haven’t played their best football and this certainly isn’t my first time,” Greenway said. “A lot of good things though, too. A lot of times it’s easy to pick apart what’s out in the open and can be seen, it’s the things that happen that they don’t understand that can’t be graded.”


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