Midweek Stock Report: Vikings shine, Team USA stumbles
Every Wednesday, FOX Sports North takes a look at which athletes' stock is trending up and whose is trending down.
In other words, who is heating up, and who is quickly cooling off.
With that in mind, let's "take stock" of the current sports scene in Minnesota.
Everson Griffen, Vikings defensive end
Griffen harassed Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton for three sacks Sunday en route to NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors, but his biggest contribution to the Vikings' third win didn't feature as prominently in the box score. Griffen tackled Newton late in the fourth quarter, forcing an errant throw that Vikings defender Tom Johnson intercepted to ice the game and give Minnesota a 22-10 win.
Marcus Sherels, Vikings cornerback
Every year seems to bring fresh speculation that the Vikings could opt to cut Sherels for his defensive deficiencies, but the undersized cornerback brings too much added value on special teams. Sherels was at it again in Charlotte, returning a Panthers punt 54 yards for a touchdown. It's his fourth such score, extending his franchise record. Sherels is now tied with Philadelphia Eagles running back Darren Sproles for the most punt return scores since 2012, the year he recorded his first.
Eduardo Escobar, Twins infielder
Escobar hit his first home run in nearly two months in a loss to the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday. He added a single as well for his first multi-hit game since Sept. 6.
Nino Niederreiter, Wild forward
A native of Switzerland, Niederreiter has three points and a plus-3 rating through six games, while Team Europe currently trails Canada 1-0 in the best-of-three finals. With eight countries represented on the roster, Team Europe has played without an anthem so far, but if they can knock off Canada in Toronto, the supposed hockey capital of the world? Well... "I guess there is no one to blame / we're leaving ground / will things ever be the same again?"
Zach Parise/Ryan Suter, Wild players
Parise and Suter are unfortunate stand-ins for the rest of Team USA and its disappointing 0-3 run at the World Cup of Hockey. Essays have been written on the flawed methodology that brought us to this point -- this point being five goals in three games and back-breaking losses to Team Europe and the Czech Republic -- but Phil Kessel can take it from here:
Jose Berrios, Twins pitcher
Minnesota Twins manager Paul Molitor was impressed with Berrios' changeup in his 13th start, but the promising rookie logged another four-inning outing against the Royals on Tuesday. Berrios was held without a strikeout for the first time this season.
Charles Johnson, Vikings wide receiver
Johnson was held without a catch on just two targets against the Panthers and has just three receptions on the season. Head coach Mike Zimmer has a tendency to bring his young receivers along slowly, but Johnson could find himself sidelined in favor of rookie Laquon Treadwell sooner rather than later.