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COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT GETS NEW LIFE

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The NFL owners and the NFLPA agreed to extend the current collective bargaining agreement five days to March 11 in hopes of getting a new deal done, so there’s hope for a somewhat uninterrupted (off)season.

What all this has meant for you and I is there’s not much Vikings news going on. With free agency on hold, there is precious little NFL activity outside of preparing for the draft.

Both sides will resume talks today after taking a break over the weekend.

NEWS ROUNDUP
So, here are a few of the bits of Vikings-related news you might’ve missed over the past few days.

While it’s clear the Vikings were planning a future without him, defensive tackle Pat Williams confirms he’s not coming back, mostly because he’s lost trust with the organization, ESPN1500.com’s Tom Pelissero reports. So Big Pat will find a new home for his rocking chair.

The Star Tribune‘s Judd Zulgad lists the players the Vikings tendered and those they did not. It is an interesting peek into the Vikings priorities.

Wide receiver Sidney Rice, unsurprisingly, received a first-round tender, which, under the terms of the current CBA, would mean the Vikings would get a first-round pick if he signs elsewhere and the team doesn’t match the offer. Based on comments from head coach Leslie Fraizer, it would seem the Vikings are sincere in wanting to bring Rice back.

Defensive end Ray Edwards, on the other hand, who also received a first-round tender, might be a different case entirely. Edwards has made no bones about wanting to test free agency and land a big contract, so it’s felt like he’s had one foot out the door for a while.

Add to that the fact that backup defensive end Brian Robison was offered and accepted a new three-year deal from the team, and it sure looks like the plan is for Robison to be the heir apparent at left end.

Safety Husain Abdullah and offensive lineman Ryan Cook both received second-round tenders.

The tenders are an indication either that the Vikings want to retain that player or that the team believes that player has market value.

For both safety Eric Frampton and linebacker Erin Henderson the Vikings claimed the right of first refusal, meaning the team would have a chance to match any deal they were offered.

I’m guessing the team wants everyone I’ve just listed back and is willing to let Edwards walk. I think those decisions are as straight-forward as are the decisions about whom not to retain:

Those players that did not receive a tender include quarterback Tarvaris Jackson, fullback Naufahu Tahi, running back Albert Young, wide receiver Hank Baskett, defensive tackle Fred Evans.

You’ve listed to me rant about Jackson and, especially, Tahi, during the past year so it’ll come as no surprise to hear I’ll be happy to see them go, though I’m a bit worried they might bring Tahi back after no-one takes him. Ugh.

Young and Baskett did nothing, so no surprise there, either.

Evans on the other hand is a little surprising simply because of our lack of depth at defensive tackle.

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MIKE SINGLETARY’S CALLER ID
Vikings linebackers coach Mike Singletary is ready and wiling to screen his calls in the event of a lockout, according to the Pioneer PressJeremy Fowler.

Singletary also conducted an interview with ESPN over the weekend, during which he talked about his new job and about Dave Duerson‘s suicide. [WATCH.]

A CAUTIONARY TALE
Somewhere along the line someone has told you “Don’t believe everything you read.” Here’s why:

ProFootballTalk posted an item citing a “report” from Pioneer Press columnist Charley Walters about the Vikings having considered trading for Kyle Orton and about an anonymous Vikings source’s lack of confidence in Joe Webb.

Here’s the relevant “report” from Walters’ piece:

“A little birdie says the Vikings considered trading for Denver quarterback Kyle Orton but have backed off. But it wasn’t because of any progress made by Joe Webb, who insiders say is nowhere close to being an effective starter.”

So you’re gonna go with that, ProFootballTalk? Insiders? A little birdie?

That tells me exactly nothing. Insiders could be anyone.

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