Kellen Mond’s No. 11 Minnesota Vikings jersey apparently is becoming quite popular in his hometown of San Antonio.
“They’re in hot demand in this town,” said his father, Kevin Mond.
The Vikings picked up Mond in the third round of the NFL draft on April 30, and many believe the former Texas A&M quarterback eventually will replace Kirk Cousins as the starter. For now, his father is doing his part to spread some No. 11 jerseys around San Antonio.
Kevin Mond was in the Twin Cities last week to see his son and he returned to Texas with 24 Mond jerseys he purchased at the TCO Performance Center. Each one cost about $125, so he spent about $3,000 on them.
“There’s every size,” he said. “They’re mostly for family and our close friends, Kellen’s support system.”
Kevin Mond is hoping one of the jerseys eventually will hang at Cover 3, a San Antonio sports bar and restaurant. The business already has an autographed Mond helmet on display.
Mond is competing with Jake Browning and Nate Stanley to be the Vikings’ backup quarterback to Cousins. Offensive coordinator Klint Kubiak liked what he saw from Mond in spring drills, saying he has learned much about him since he arrived for a May 14-16 rookie minicamp.
“He’s a hard worker, and he loves football,” Kubiak said. “Football is his life, and he’s going to kill himself before he’s not prepared for a practice or a meeting, so I appreciate that about him. You’re not going to coach that into somebody. It’s something that’s built into them by their coaches and by their parents. And he’s got the work ethic and the want-to to get better. Now, he’s got to go get him some repetitions with his teammates to help him expedite that process.”
The Vikings concluded spring drills Wednesday with the second practice of what was scheduled to be a three-day minicamp. Thursday’s scheduled final workout was cancelled for what Kubiak said was a “reward” from head coach Mike Zimmer to the players for a “hard-worked offseason.”
On Wednesday, Cousins spoke well of how Mond looked during the spring.
“He’s done a nice job picking up the scheme,” Cousins said. “With the reps he’s getting, he is trying to make plays. He’s just on that same process of building his game.”
Kubiak took over as offensive coordinator after his father, Gary Kubiak, retired from the position last January. Klint Kubiak speaks often with this father but said the latter has made a point to have “kept his distance” from the team.
“He’s been keeping himself really busy (back home) in Texas,” Klint Kubiak said. “I think right now he’s going to the College World Series (in Omaha) to see my uncle.”
Gary Kubiak’s brother-in-law, David Pierce, is the head baseball coach at Texas. Klint Kubiak said he won’t be able to get to Omaha since he has a vacation scheduled to fish on the Mississippi River but that he will be watching the tournament on television.
Entering his first season calling plays at any level, Klint Kubiak, 34, said he will “definitely rely” on his father for advice and “seek it daily.” He spoke to his dad regularly during spring drills.
“He certainly cares about our players and our coaching staff and is really invested in what we’re doing,” he said. “I’m keeping him up on those things, but he has done an excellent job at staying away, which I am very shocked at.”
— Defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson has a 2021 cap number of $2.316 million after the Vikings added two years that will be voided onto the one-year deal he signed Wednesday. Richardson will get a guaranteed $1.075 million base salary in 2021, a $1.925 million signing bonus and up to $600,000 in per-game roster bonuses for a total of $3.6 million. He could make as much as $4.35 million if reaches some other incentives.
— Zimmer liked what he saw in spring workouts from first-round draft pick Christian Darrisaw even though the tackle missed “three or four days” due to a groin strain. “He’s a very talented and athletic kid,” Zimmer said. “He is very, very smart and works very hard.” Rashod Hill worked with the first team at left tackle throughout spring drills, and Zimmer said Darrisaw needs to “continue to compete” to possibly win the job.