Latavius Murray is on record saying he plans to be the No. 1 running back when the Vikings take the field against the Saints in Week 1 of the regular season.
That's a nice thought, but a false one according to The MMQB's Albert Breer says the job Murray signed up for in March is "already gone."
Hello, Dalvin Cook.
While Murray watches from the side fields in Mankato rehabbing his surgically repaired ankle, Cook has been living up to the hype he created as a star at Florida State.
“I’ve been pretty fortunate in my career,” Vikings general manager Rick Spielman explained to Breer in the interview about Cook. “From Detroit, when I was starting out, watching Barry Sanders; to Miami, when we traded for Ricky Williams and he was rolling for 1,700, 1,800 yards a year; to Adrian, when we drafted him here. Dalvin Cook, I don’t know where he’s gonna be, if he’ll get to that level, but he has shown traits, a unique skill set, from what we’ve seen so far.”
Spielman isn't flat out saying Cook is the next Barry Sanders or Adrian Peterson. He's simply suggesting that Cook has the special traits the greats had.
“That’s kinda how he is," head coach Mike Zimmer told Breer. "They see him out there on the field with the other guys, and it’s like, ‘There’s something different about this guy, the way he runs, accelerates, the creases he can get to.’ He’s got a tough mentality. Players can see exceptional athletes. When they go out there and they’re going against guys, they can see: This guy is pretty good.”
And it's not like Cook is running behind an all-world offensive line and against a mediocre defense.
"Our front is serious," Cook said after the first padded practice of training camp on Sunday. "I didn't know they were this good until I got out there."
If the Vikings can actually run block this season, Cook will have a good chance to rack up major yards because the Packers, Ravens and Panthers are the only teams on Minnesota's schedule that had a top 10 rushing defense last season.
41 days until the opener on Monday Night Football against New Orleans.