Trevor Siemian Focused on Reps, Growth Early in Vikings Tenure

Jun 11, 2018 | by Eric Smith, Vikings.com

EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings are less than 100 days away from their Sept. 9 season opener against San Francisco at U.S. Bank Stadium.

If all goes as planned, Minnesota will trot out Kirk Cousins at quarterback and show off its stout defense as it looks to start a new path toward the postseason.

But Cousins isn’t the only quarterback the Vikings added to their roster this offseason. In the days following the signing of Cousins, Minnesota also traded for Trevor Siemian.

You can count Minnesota’s probable backup quarterback as one who is actually excited there’s still so much time until the season begins, especially since he’s trying to adapt to a new offense and new environment.

“Truthfully, I don’t feel too comfortable, but then I don’t think you should at this point,” Siemian said last week after a Vikings Organized Team Activity practice. “We have a lot of time, and there’s a lot of work to be done. 

“I’m kind of happy with where I’m at a month or two in the system, but there’s still a lot of work to be done and we all know that,” Siemian added. “But it’s a great group, and everybody has been on the same page, so it’s a lot of fun.”

The 26-year-old has appeared in 26 total games and has completed 495 of 835 passes (59.3 percent) over his three-year career with the Broncos. He has thrown for 30 touchdowns with 24 interceptions and has a passer rating of 79.9. 

Siemian has 24 total starts and is 13-11. He started 14 games for Denver in 2015 and went 8-6. He also opened 10 games, going 5-5 in 2017.

But now that the former Northwestern quarterback is in Minnesota, Siemian is diving headfirst into Vikings Offensive Coordinator John DeFilippo’s intricate offensive system.

“Anytime you get in a new system, a lot of it is terminology,” Siemian said. “There’s nuances to every system, and Coach Flip is doing a heck of a job teaching us.

“You’ve got to get the reps at it to get anything straightened out, so we’re hammering away and making progress every day,” Siemian added. 

Siemian briefly chatted with the media on Tuesday, but made multiple references to the importance of maximizing practice reps during OTAs.

He said he’s taken advantage of being at Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Center, the Vikings gleaming new practice facility, using every resource available to him.

“We have virtual reality, which is working out really well,” Siemian said. “And then watching a bunch of tape … practices and game cut-ups of the concepts we have in, just to see how they’ll look against live defenses in a game. We have plenty of tape to watch.” 

The goal, Siemian said, is to eventually know DeFilippo’s offense like the back of his hand in case he’s called upon at some point during the 2018 season.

And as he learns, Siemian is relying on others in the quarterback room, all of whom are in the same position he is in. He also credited Vikings quarterbacks coach Kevin Stefanski for help and guidance along the way. 

“We’ve got a great room, and Kirk is obviously doing a great job,” Siemian said. “Kevin is doing an awesome job with us, so just trying to learn a lot and learn the system and get everybody on the same page. 

“I’m getting there. It helps that it’s a great organization and great locker room and coaches, everyone is really knowledgeable,” Siemian added. “It’s still June yet, so there’s a couple more steps, but I feel good about everything.”

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