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Vikings should feature diverse attack

Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson (84) is poised for a big season with offensive wizard Norv Turner calling the plays. USA Today Sports photo

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minnesota — The beauty of Norv Turner’s various offenses the past three decades is they’ve kept him from being pigeonholed as a coach who prefers certain types of weapons ahead of others.

Some have called him a quarterback guru. Some have pointed out that he had five league rushing champions.

Some have mentioned that two of his receivers — Michael Irvin in the early ‘90s and Josh Gordon last season — led the league in receiving yardage. And, of course, some will point out how tight end-friendly his offenses have always been.

The Minnesota Vikings hope Turner is all of those things as he heads into his first season as their offensive coordinator.

“You see so many different varieties of defense in this league that you want to have a complete offense and be able to attack the defense’s weaknesses,” Turner said during the team’s mandatory minicamp this week.

The Vikings lack a franchise quarterback at the moment with Matt Cassel the team’s expected starter and 2014 first-round pick Teddy Bridgewater the quarterback of the future.

The team does have a nice set of offensive weapons around, whoever the quarterback is, however. Adrian Peterson will be the focal point, while Greg Jennings and promising second-year player Cordarrelle Patterson provide nice options on the outside.

Turner figures to have no shortage of plays for the gameplan when training camp begins July 25 in Mankato, Minnesota.

“If that means being a power-run team one week, being a spread team another week, being a team that’s capable of throwing the ball if they are overplaying the run or running the ball if they give you opportunities to run it and when they give you opportunities to run it,” he said.

Turner will be flexible in the approach he takes.

“The biggest thing to me, and if you ask our players I think this is the thing I talk most about is we have to be a team that plays our best in the fourth quarter in the most critical times,” he said. “If you can run the ball when people are trying to stop the run that’s the ultimate. We’re just trying to become the most complete offense we can be.”