Minnesota Vikings 2012: Percy Harvin and Other Early Training Camp Standouts

Sam Lanctot@@SamWiseThoughtsCorrespondent IAugust 4, 2012

Vikings' Percy Harvin studies his teammates before taking his turn on the field.
Vikings' Percy Harvin studies his teammates before taking his turn on the field.Bruce Kluckhohn-US PRESSWIRE

The Minnesota Vikings are one week into their 2012 training camp, and one week away from their first preseason game on August 10th.

This camp has many new faces, and with 90 players running around, it is hard to pinpoint every good thing that each one is doing. However, with that first game drawing closer and closer, here is a quick look at a few of the players that have stood out so far. 

Jeff Charleston

While Charleston has been playing with the second and third teams, he has stood out. He has demonstrated the ability to get to the quarterbacks quickly in camp, causing some errant throws.

With new defensive coordinator Alan Williams' desire to have more rotation along the defensive line, winning a backup position could get him quite a bit of playing time.

Greg Childs

If you haven't seen Childs' remarkable catch during camp yet, I highly suggest you watch it. It appears missing part of OTAs has not slowed Childs at all. He has shown excellent hands to go with his favorable size, and might be the early favorite to replace Simpson during the first three games of the season.

Chris Cook

Alan Williams said he wants to use Cook everywhere, and so far he has shined where ever he has played. He is showing that he is in great physical shape, and has improved his mental aspects of the game from a year ago.

He looks like a veteran in camp, both with his performance and his aptitude to help his fellow corners.

Bobby Felder

He has played with a high energy level throughout all of the offseason, and has had a couple of impressive interceptions. There is extra depth at the corner position this year, with the new additions through free agency and the draft.

He should get a decent look in some preseason games, which will show us if he is as good as he has looked.

Chad Greenway

Greenway has been working on his coverage abilities heading into this offseason, and the work looks to be paying off. He has played well against whomever he matches up with, recording pass breakups and generally being a headache for the quarterbacks.

With the departure of E.J. Henderson (at least for now), Greenway needs to show he is the leader of the linebackers. 

Letroy Guion

Alan Williams has called Guion phenomenal. His ability to get off of blocks and his relentless pursuit of the ball carrier has made him the early favorite to win the starting spot next to Kevin Williams. He has shown a greater range of play than in previous years.

Percy Harvin

He has lined up almost everywhere at this early stage of camp. He has performed well on the outside and in the slot, and he should get opportunities in the backfield soon. That could turn out to be his best contribution to the team.

If he can line up anywhere, it will allow for numerous different packages to go out against defenses, which will keep them guessing.

Harvin has also been practicing kickoff returns again, which could mean he is in line to be the primary return man again.

Kyle Rudolph

He has emerged as Christian Ponder's favorite target, catching anything that enters his vicinity. He has looked particularly impressive during their goal line practice.

With the uncertainty surrounding Adrian Peterson as well as John Carlson's injury, Rudolph will have to be everything he has shown himself to be. His relationship on and off the field with his quarterback will certainly help him.

Jerome Simpson

He started his excellent offseason with great performances in both the OTAs and mini camp. He has transitioned well into training camp.

He continues to show off his athleticism, as well as some solid route running. If he can perform this way during the season, a career year could be in store, even with his suspension to start the year.

Kerry Taylor

Taylor is a small wide receiver out of Arizona State that has shown promise. He has displayed his great hands by not dropping anything that comes near him. He has also demonstrated the ability to play special teams.

Unfortunately for him, he'll have to really stand out among the many receivers around him in order to make the squad.


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