Browns 2017 opponent breakdown: Vikings, Week 8


One by one, is breaking down each of the Browns' 2017 regular season opponents as training camp fast approaches.*

Who: Minnesota Vikings

When: Oct. 29

Where:@ Twickenham Stadium, Twickenham, England

Series History:10-4 (Most recent: Browns 31, Vikings 27 2013)

Way-too-early storyline(s):The Browns will cross the pond to play the Vikings in London at Twickenham Stadium. They'll face Minnesota team that lost seven of its last nine games following a 6-1 start to the 2016 season. The Vikings return

Key players to watch:QB Sam Bradford, QB Teddy Bridgewater, RB Dalvin Cook, RB Latavius Murray, WR Stefon Diggs, WR Laquon Treadwell, WR Adam Thielen, TE Kyle Rudolph, OL Alex Boone, DL Everson Griffen, DL Linval Joseph, LB Anthony Barr, CB Xavier Rhodes, DB Harrison Smith

What happened this offseason?

— The Vikings parted ways with longtime running Adrian Peterson after declining to pick up the seven-time Pro Bowler's 2017 option. Peterson, who totaled 11,747 yards and 97 touchdowns in 10 seasons in Minnesota, was placed on injured reserve last season after three games because of a torn meniscus. He signed with theSaints in April.

— To fill that void, the Vikings drafted former Florida State running back Dalvin Cook with the 41st overall pick in the NFL Draft and signed former Oakland running back Latavius Murray. Cook was widely considered to be a first-round talent, but fell due to a below-average Combine showing and off-field concerns. He totaled 4,464 yards and 46 rushing and caught 79 passes for 935 yards. Minnesota did not have a first-round pick in 2017 after dealing it to the Eagles last summer for quarterback Sam Bradford. Murray, meanwhile, rushed for 2,288 yards and 20 touchdowns in three seasons with the Raiders.

— Speaking of Bradford, the veteran signal caller might find himself in a competition with Teddy Bridgewater, who missed the 2016 season after a significant knee injury in training camp. Bridgewater, the 32nd overall pick in 2014, has started 28 of 29 games for Minnesota, including all 16 two seasons ago. When he went down, the Vikings traded for the veteran Bradford, who completed 72 percent of his passes for 3,877, 20 touchdowns and five interceptions.

— Minnesota re-signed wide receiver Adam Thielen, who caught 69 passes for 967 yards and five touchdowns in what was a breakout season. Thielen, who enters his fourth NFL season, played college football at Minnesota State University, Mankato.​

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