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  • The Vikings-Broncos exhibition Saturday night features more intrigue than the typical preseason opener.

    Denver QB Case Keenum gets to face his former teammates whom he helped reach the NFC championship before management dumped him in favor of Kirk Cousins  Tony Dorsett Jersey , the jewel of this winter's free agent class.

    Keenum said Wednesday he's eager to face the Vikings.

    "Definitely. I mean, I got a firsthand view of how good a defense it is, so I know we've got our work cut out for us. It's going to be a great test. I'm excited to go compete against a really, really talented defense," Keenum said.

    Keenum insisted he holds no grudges , either.

    "No, man. I love all those guys," he said. "This Saturday it's going to be a competition and we're going to get after it. I know those guys are going to be jacked to get back on the field just like I'm jacked to get back on the field. But, no. No bad feelings."

    Keenum went 12-4 for the Vikings last season after injuries to Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewater, but Minnesota moved on in the offseason, winning the Cousins sweepstakes with, among other things, a strong roster, a sparkling new stadium and a fully guaranteed contract for $84 million over three years.

    Keenum signed a two-year, $36 million deal in Denver.

    Asked what he admires about Keenum's game after watching film of last season's surge Paul Hornung Jersey , Cousins said, "Any time you win 13 games and a playoff game you're doing an outstanding job as a quarterback, but I've watched Case going back to his days in Houston running Coach (Gary) Kubiak's offense, watching him in L.A. He won that job in training camp, and here, he's just a winner."

    Cousins said Keenum does all the little things right: "There's a lot of positives to his game."

    It's just that the Vikings found more to like in Cousins' repertoire.

    "Case was a winner," Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said. "He won a lot of games and moved well in the pocket. He's a great teammate and made some outstanding plays for us.

    "With Kirk, he's been as advertised. He throws the deep ball well, very accurate, and takes charge of the offense."

    Cousins and Keenum figure to play a series or two Saturday night, then give way to their backups, and that's where the real intrigue comes in.

    Trevor Siemian won the Broncos' starting job each of the last two summers but was traded to Minnesota after the Broncos signed Keenum.

    Zimmer said Siemian's 24 starts over the last two years and high IQ made him a perfect fit as Cousins' backup.

    Siemian said Keenum's short stint in Minnesota is indicative of how important it is to have a capable backup ready to step in and run the offense should the starter get hurt.

    "Case here, Nick Foles in Philly," Siemian said. "Yeah, I think you're one play away. My job is to prepare as if I'm starting and knock on wood Lorenzo Alexander Jersey , if I'm called upon, I'll be ready to go."

    Siemian, however, might not even get as much work this weekend as another former Broncos QB, Kyle Sloter, who signed with the Vikings a year ago after a surprisingly strong camp in Denver.

    The Broncos are still holding out hope that Paxton Lynch is a late-bloomer and not a first-round bust.

    Broncos coach Vance Joseph declared Lynch and Chad Kelly would battle it out for the backup job this summer, yet Lynch has worked exclusively with the second-teamers while Kelly has worked with the third-stringers so far.

    Kelly, however, has consistently outshined Lynch and was clearly the superior quarterback in a recent scrimmage.

    Lynch figures to get the bulk of the snaps Saturday night for Denver, and his performance could go a long way in determining if the Broncos need to consider signing a veteran backup for Keenum.

    Notes: DE Clinton McDonald was getting his troublesome shoulder checked out again Wednesday. ... Joseph said TE Jeff Heuerman, who has missed all but one day of camp with a sore left knee, doesn't necessarily have to rush back to make the roster. "It's early," Joseph said. "I wouldn't say that right now. That's extreme."

    Danny Amendola left the Patriots for the Dolphins in free agency this offseason, and he’s already feeling the difference in coaching styles.

    Amendola said on the Comeback Szn podcast that playing for Dolphins coach Adam Gase is like playing for a friend, while playing for Patriots coach Bill Belichick is like playing for the boss.

    “Coach Gase is one of the guys Derrius Guice Jersey , one of the boys, and you want to fight hard for your boys. Back in New England, it’s almost like you’ve got a principal, the principal’s office and s–t like that,” Amendola said.

    Amendola wasn’t ripping Belichick, whom he also called “the greatest coach of all time.” But he was saying that as a veteran player, he now appreciates having a coach who treats him more like an equal.

    “It’s been great,” Amendola said of spending the offseason in Miami. “It’s worked out amazing. All the guys are cool. The team is cool, my group is cool. The coaches are awesome. Coach Gase is one of the guys. He’s our leader, he’s our head coach, but he’s also our boy. So it’s cool. It’s refreshing to have that kind of relationship with a coach, something I haven’t had in a long time. I facetimed coach Gase yesterday just to bulls–t with him, just to talk to him. I was talking to his kids. I have a relationship with him that’s real unique, something I haven’t had in a while.”

    Amendola was looking for that kind of environment when he became a free agent this year.

    “When free agency broke and I had the opportunity to talk to other teams and coaches and see what was out there, coach Gase called and he was cool fro the jump. We talked about football Marshall Faulk Jersey , we talked about life, we talked about Miami, we talked about New England, we talked about what we both had been through,” Amendola said. “He’s one of the guys and he works hard, he embraces the grind, he’s up at the facility 24/7 and he’s obsessed with the game. So any time you get around a coach like that, a coach you can relate to, a coach that will grind with the guys, you want to play hard for him.”

    Now Amendola will try to help the Dolphins show that a team can win with a coach who is one of the guys.

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