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Vikings use Brandon Fusco at left guard, T.J. Clemmings at right guard

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings' offensive line certainly could take on a different look between now and the start of the regular season. But the way the Vikings lined up for their first open organized team activity on Wednesday would suggest they've got a plan in mind for their two guard spots.

The Vikings moved Brandon Fusco from right guard to left guard during Wednesday's practice, and continued to work rookie T.J. Clemmings at right guard after giving him some time there during rookie camp earlier this month. Clemmings played tackle in college, but coach Mike Zimmer said the Vikings plan to keep Clemmings at right guard for now.

Zimmer said the alignment was primarily for Clemmings' benefit, so the rookie could stay on the same side of the offensive line as he played in college. "We know that Fusco can always move back if we plug somebody else in at left guard." But it's telling that the Vikings' first plan of the spring involves a move for Fusco and a starting spot for Clemmings.

While Fusco earned himself a five-year contract extension before last season largely because of his prowess as a run blocker, his presence also might help Matt Kalil after two injury-plagued and inconsistent seasons for the left tackle. Kalil said he's getting close to 100 percent after a pair of knee surgeries this offseason, and while he said he's not worried about his future in Minnesota, he could be in line to earn a lucrative contract extension if he gets back to his Pro Bowl form of 2012.

The Vikings released left guard Charlie Johnson this spring, after the veteran struggled in pass protection -- and especially in blitz pickups -- last year. If Fusco stays on the left side, he could be a steadying force for Kalil.

"I love Brandon," Kalil said. "He's a strong, smart football player. Awesome to have him next to me, another young guy. He's 26, i'm 25. It's a confidence booster, knowing that if we have slide protections, he's going to be there every time. If I get an inside move, he's not going to bail on me. It's going to be nice to have that. We're just working on getting better every day."

Asked if he thinks Fusco will be the left guard when the Vikings open the regular season in San Francisco on Sept. 14, Kalil said, "That's where he's at right now; that's what i'm going with. From the looks of it, yeah."