Although John DeFilippo immediately followed Pat Shurmur as the Minnesota Vikings’ offensive coordinator this offseason, he did not maintain any of the scheme that was in place.
That means wide receiver Adam Thielen and the rest of the incumbents have spent OTA and mandatory minicamp practices learning a new way of doing things. At the same time, Thielen and the rest of the receivers are also getting used to catching passes from a new quarterback, Kirk Cousins, who replaced Case Keenum.
‘This offense is completely different, completely different verbiage and things like that’
“Actually, pretty much completely opposite,” Thielen told Jim Miller and Pat Kirwan on Movin’ The Chains about DeFilippo’s offensive approach.” I think Coach Shurmur, he pretty much kept the offense the same as, for the most part — he obviously had his own wrinkles and things like that — but he pretty much kept it the same as the offense we had when Coach (Norv) Turner was here. This offense is completely different, completely different verbiage and things like that.
“It’s a lot to learn, but it kind of keeps it fresh and keeps you learning and upbeat and having fun out there.”
‘Every coach kind of has his little things that he really likes and that he wants his guys to do’
The biggest challenge has been the changes in the techniques the Vikings’ offensive players are being taught.
“It can be difficult at first, just because you’re so used to doing certain things a certain way,” Thielen said. “And every coach kind of has his little things that he really likes and that he wants his guys to do, whether it be splits or alignments, top-of-route things, different routes taught different ways.
‘I think it’s so important to have these practices, as much as sometimes it’s a lot of work an all that’
“I think the biggest thing, and that’s why it’s so great to have the OTAs, is trying to figure that out, first of all, what he likes and then trying to figure out what the quarterback likes and then kind of trying to show what you like and what you feel really comfortable in and making sure everybody’s on the same page. I think it’s so important to have these practices, as much as sometimes it’s a lot of work an all that. But I think it’s so important and we have a great team that actually takes advantage of that.”
Going from Keenum to Cousins has required the receivers to become acclimated to the ball being delivered in a different way. With Cousins, there is a bit more time to get in the best possible position to make the catch.
‘The biggest thing right now with Kirk is the way that the ball comes out of his hand’
“Every quarterback has a little something different that they do and everyone of them has things that their strengths are different than the other,” Thielen said. “The biggest thing right now with Kirk is the way that the ball comes out of his hand. It comes out with a different pop to it. He gives you some time to adjust to the football as well. Some guys kind of like to throw it a little firmer.”
Music, Sports, News and more
All in one place on the SiriusXM app