EKSTROM: Vikings Players Repeats as Media Good Guy Winner

EKSTROM: Vikings Players Repeats as Media Good Guy Winner

Written By Sam Ekstrom (ColdOmaha.com)
Photo Credit: Kyle Hansen

Captain Munnerlyn is still lobbying for the NFL to create a Pro Bowl spot for slot cornerbacks. Until that time, he’ll have to settle for accolades awarded by the local media.

Munnerlyn won his second consecutive Korey Stringer Media Good Guy award on Wednesday, the first back-to-back winner since 2003-2004. It’s been a trying year for the 7-8 Vikings, but you wouldn’t know it through the media’s interactions with the always-affable Munnerlyn. “Through you guys, that’s how we get to our fans and get the word out on different things,” he said Wednesday. “I felt like it’s always been a pleasure to talk to you guys and to express myself on how I’m feeling and how the team’s feeling, and things like that, so without you guys a lot of things wouldn’t get out, good and bad.

“You all have embraced me. I came into Minnesota, and you all have been taking care of me. Even when I’m not playing as well, you guys always come up and talk to me. I don’t know if it’s because I’m always a straight shooter or I’m just an honest guy, but it is truly a blessing to receive this award and to be back to back.”

A soon-to-be free agent, Munnerlyn will have to re-sign with the Vikings in order to maintain possession of the coveted plaque. He’s made $3.75 million on average during his three years in Minnesota and may be looking for a raise. “Hopefully I’m back around,” said Munnerlyn. “I want to be here. I feel like I’ve grown up a lot here. I know the scheme in and out now. I know the organization. I know the coaching staff, and I know my teammates. It’s not up to me. It’s definitely a business. If it was up to me, I definitely would like to be here.”

In honor of Munnerlyn’s award-winning season, let’s revisit some of his best sound bites.

Advocating for the slot corner position to get Pro Bowl recognition: “Nickelbacks typically don’t make the Pro Bowl, so you guys need to put that out there a little bit more. Nickles should be on the ballot. I don’t know why we’re not on it. It’s a position just like a fullback.”
On beating out young guys: “I know there’s a lot of young cornerbacks or nickelbacks, they’re coming in this league trying to take my spot, so you definitely need to keep your eyes on those guys.”
Comparing Mike Zimmer to his former head coach Ron Rivera: “I think Zimmer, he’s more a little blunt with everything. Zim ain’t gonna sugarcoat nothing. Coach Rivera, he might beat around the bush a little here and there, but at the same time he’s gonna let you know. Coach Zim, he’s hard nosed.”

On Mike Zimmer’s scary eye patch: “I didn’t look at him. I’d be nervous looking at him with that patch on.”

On playing on Thanksgiving Day: “Hopefully I can come away with a turkey leg or something.”

On Xavier Rhodes’ interception return versus Arizona: “I didn’t know he ran 22.4 [mph] yesterday with the ball in his hand. I didn’t think he was that fast. I think he shocked himself. I don’t know if he was a little nervous about Carson Palmer chasing him or what.”

Comparing himself to Brett Favre: “Brett Favre was my favorite player. I take risks, and I take chances. That’s something that the quarterbacks do, those gunslingers, and Brett Favre, he’s a tremendous player, Hall of Famer. If I was a quarterback and they said I had a little Brett Favre in me, I’d say, ‘Oh, shoot. I might have a chance.'”