As a lead up to the draft, Acme Packing Company will be tracking the offseason personnel changes for the rest of the NFC North. Today we continue with the Minnesota Vikings.
The Minnesota Vikings had a great season, but in true Viking fashion, it ended in heartbreak.
The Vikings were in the thick of the NFC North race all season, finishing the season strong with a 10-6 record. They ended up taking 2nd place in the NFC North to the Green Bay Packers and securing a Wild Card spot. For the second time a few years, they stunned the New Orleans Saints in the playoffs, only to get run over by the San Francisco 49ers in the next round.
However, last season is last season, and the Vikings front office is looking towards the future, and the moves they have made thus far during the free agency period reflect that.
WR Stefon Diggs
Arguably the biggest loss for the Vikings this offseason was the trade that sent Diggs to the Buffalo Bills. It is no secret that Diggs has been unhappy with things in Minneapolis, and the Vikings were able to secure 2020 first-round pick, a 2020 fifth-round pick, a 2020 sixth-round pick and a 2021 fourth-round pick.
DT Linval Joseph
The Vikings defense has taken a huge hit this offseason, and one of the biggest losses was Linval Joseph. Releasing him was a way to help ease some salary cap issues the Vikings had. He was a large part of what made the Vikings defense so strong, but had struggled with injuries. His new deal with the Los Angeles Chargers is for two years, and is worth $17 million.
CB Trae Waynes
The Vikings drafted Waynes in the first round of the 2015 draft and has been an essential piece to their defense since then. With the Vikings already struggling with the salary cap, resigning Waynes was not a real possibility, and he ultimately signed with the Cincinnati Bengals for three years and $42 million.
DE Everson Griffen
Continuing the trend of the Vikings losing their top defensive players during free agency, Griffen decided to opt out of his contract with the Vikings and test the free agency waters. This move helps the Vikings save significant money on the salary cap. He is still a free agent, but teams like the Seattle Seahawks have been mentioned as a landing spot.
RG Josh Kline
On the offensive side of the ball, the Vikings lost one of their key offensive lineman. He signed with the Vikings last offseason, and the Vikings hoped they could restructure his contract, but both sides could not come to an agreement and the team cut him loose. He is currently a free agent.
Additional players lost in free agency include
- CB Xavier Rhodes (Colts)
- S Andrew Sendejo (Browns)
- CB Mackensie Alexander (Bengals)
- WR Laquon Treadwell (Falcons)
- S Jayron Kearse (Lions)
- DE Stephen Weatherly (Panthers)
- CB Marcus Sherels (Free agent)
- ILB Kentrell Brothers (Free agent)
- TE David Morgan (Free agent)
DT Michael Pierce
With the Vikings losing Linval Joseph, adding another strong defensive lineman was a key priority this offseason. Pierce has consistently been one of the best run-stopping defensive linemen in the NFL. He signed a three-year, $27 million dollar contract with the Vikings.
DE Anthony Zettel
Zettel has bounced around the league the last couple of years, but did get a few snaps with the 49ers in the Super Bowl last season. Zettel was signed to add depth to a defense that was depleted in free agency. His contract is for one year and is worth $1 million.
WR Tajae Sharpe
With the loss of Diggs, the Vikings are in need of help at wide receiver. Thielen is a clear WR1, so Sharpe was brought in to provide support along with the other wide outs on the roster. He signed a one year, one million dollar deal.
- QB Kirk Cousins (Extenstion)
- S Anthony Harris (Franchise Tag)
- RT Rashod Hill
- K Dan Bailey
- P Britton Colquitt
- QB Sean Mannion
- LG Dakota Dozier
- RB Ameer Abdullah
- C Brett Jones
- RB C.J. Ham
- OLB Eric Wilson