NFL Minnesota Vikings

5 Things To Watch For In Minnesota Vikings 2014 Preseason Opener

5 Things To Watch For In Minnesota Vikings 2014 Preseason Opener

Minnesota Vikings Helmet
Getty Images

The Minnesota Vikings will play their preseason opener this Friday against the Oakland Raiders. Given that it is only the team’s first game of the preseason, definitive starters should not see much action and only a tiny portion of the playbook will be revealed.

Here are five things to watch for during the Vikings' first preseason game.

5. Amount of Time Christian Ponder Plays

Christian Ponder Minnesota Vikings
Getty Images

5. Amount of Time Christian Ponder Plays

Christian Ponder Minnesota Vikings
Getty Images

Mike Zimmer and Norv Turner have had nothing but good things to say about Ponder so far this summer. However, the amount of time Ponder plays on Friday should say a lot about his future with the team. If Ponder only plays a few series there is likely a strong chance that his tenure with the Vikings is coming to an end sooner rather than later.

4. Alignments on Defense

Minnesota Vikings Introduce Mike Zimmer
Getty Images

4. Alignments on Defense

Minnesota Vikings Introduce Mike Zimmer
Getty Images

While Zimmer will not be revealing much this Friday, as he stated that his interest is more on the speed and athleticism of his players and not their ability to execute the playbook, fans should have an opportunity to see a sneak peak of what the defense will look like this season. The Vikings' defense will look very different this year, and many are just itching to see the new style of play.

3. Predictability of Offense

Norv Turner Minnesota Vikings
Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

3. Predictability of Offense

Norv Turner Minnesota Vikings
Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Adrian Peterson has been very vocal throughout the summer about how he expects the Vikings' offense to be far less predictable this season. Turner, like Zimmer, will not be revealing much of his playbook this Friday, but his play-calling style will be on full display. Turner is an offensive mastermind and his play-calling on Friday should be interesting, regardless of how much of the offensive playbook is used.

2. How Anthony Barr is Used

Anthony Barr Minnesota Vikings Rookie Minicamp
Getty Images

2. How Anthony Barr is Used

Anthony Barr Minnesota Vikings Rookie Minicamp
Getty Images

Barr will be playing in his first professional football game this Friday. Throughout the summer he has been lining up at a number of different positions in multiple packages. Barr should see plenty of playing time on Friday, and it will be interesting to see how Zimmer chooses to use him.

1. Teddy Bridgewater’s Game Management Ability

Teddy Bridgewater Minnesota Vikings Rookie Minicamp
Getty Images

1. Teddy Bridgewater’s Game Management Ability

Teddy Bridgewater Minnesota Vikings Rookie Minicamp
Getty Images

Turner stated that the No. 1 thing he will be judging Bridgewater on during Friday’s game is his ability to manage the football game. Turner will be expecting Bridgewater to call out the correct protections and go through his progressions with efficiency. If he can do these things without turning the football over, especially in key situations, it is very possible that Bridgewater could leapfrog Matt Cassel on the quarterback depth chart.

Robert Reidell is a Minnesota Vikings Writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google+