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Vikings' Loadholt juggles inconsistency, improvement

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Posted Oct. 15, 2011 @ 11:18 p.m. ET
By Eric Edholm

It has been an exercise in frustration, at times, watching the progress of ORT Phil Loadholt, because it hasn't always been there. Sometimes, the massive blocker appears dominant. Other times, he's sluggish and passive. The Vikings went through the travails of Bryant McKinnie for nine seasons before they finally had enough and cut him in the preseason. The hope within the organization is that the similarly sized Loadholt can avoid the same types of ebbs to his game and play more like the way he did in Week Five, when he was mostly dominant against the Cardinals. The fact that Loadholt came into camp in better shape was a great starting point, but he started the season slowly regardless. Loadholt long has struggled to get his pad level down, and this week he said he often has watched how taller tackles, such as McKinnie and ex-Raven Jonathan Ogden, manage to do it well. Loadholt also is working closely with OL coach Jeff Davidson on technique weekly. If he can improve in these ways, Loadholt can expect more dominant performances in the future.

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