Reporting Mike Max
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Minnesota Vikings are working out on their own hoping, like the rest of the NFL, they will get some news on the lockout. Jasper Brinkley is preparing like there will be a season but he’s also made sure he took care of his mother’s wish by returning to college this offseason.
It’s the workout during the lockout. Brinkley is with his fellow linebacker and friend EJ Henderson. It’s a standard two-hour get-together that pushes them in a direction.
“Basically what me and EJ. are doing is position-specific drills with our guy Mark and he’s doing a pretty good job with seeing some of the flaws that we have and strengthening up some of the things that we need strengthening because as an athlete we think everything is strong but in actuality it really is not,” said Brinkley.
Mark Ellis is the supervisor of this muscle builder. The idea is to create a program for each person.
“Our focus is being more explosive and really optimizing strength,” said Ellis. “It’s a little different than what they do but for the most part I leave it up to them to figure out. They tell me what it is that they need to do and then I adapt to whatever it is they feel like as pros that they need to do.”
Brinkley knows the season that is up in the air right now. That’s why they saved their money going into the offseason.
“Right now that’s one of the least worries of most of the guys that I talk to. A couple of the guys took the opportunity and the initiative to start saving because we already knew this was going to happen, it was just a matter of when. So … they had to make smart decisions last year,” he said.
Brinkley is a back up but entering his prime, he’s big and strong and eager.
“He’s a big, strong guy. Big, young, strong guy and it’s amazing that they look at him and think he’s a linebacker. I mean, he’s huge. He really moves well, very explosive and as strong as an ox,” said Ellis.
Brinkley spent his offseason preparing for a life without football; maybe not this year, but eventually. That’s why he finished his diploma and graduated this spring.
“I got chill bumps across my body when I went across the stage and shook the president’s hand and had the opportunity to look into the stands and see my whole body sitting there,” he said.