5 Moves The Vikings Can Make to Contend Next Season
The Minnesota Vikings are very close to being contenders so, what moves do they have to make?
Last season as a Vikings fan was a rollercoaster of emotions. From wanting to Tank for Trevor to seeing who had to win and lose the last two weeks of the season for us to make the playoffs. There are many moves the Vikings can make but, here are five that would make the most sense.
5. Get Rid of Veterans With Big Contracts
The Vikings need to release some of the older vets on roster that have big contracts. The three big ones would be tackle Riley Reiff, tight end Kyle Rudolph, and defensive lineman Shamar Stephen. These three guys take up a substantial amount of cap space and were not huge contributors last year. Wiping out their contracts will leave management more money to target big names in free agency.
4. Target Interior Offensive Linemen In Free Agency
Lots of elite interior linemen are hitting the market this offseason so, if Minnesota can free up cap space, they can land one of these big name players. The two options that I would like to see blocking for Dalvin Cook would either be Patriots guard Joe Thuney or Washington Football Team guard Brandon Scherff. It’d be a big money deal but, it would be so worth signing one of these maulers.
3. Let Anthony Harris Walk
Harris is a great coverage safety and an absolute ball hawk but, he played under the franchise tag last season and wants big money. The Vikings cannot afford Harris so, letting him walk is the best option. I believe the Vikings will draft his replacement in someone like Ifeatu Melifonwu from Syracuse or Hamsah Nasirildeen out of Florida State. Another option at safety is Josh Metellus who was on the Vikings practice squad and active roster last season.
2. Make a Splash In the Draft
Minnesota holds the 14th overall pick and can go in two different directions. If they sign a big time free agent guard then they can take an edge rusher like Kwity Paye, Gregory Rousseau, or Jaelan Philips.
If they don’t sign a free agent interior lineman then they need to take a guard or tackle. If they choose to move Ezra Cleveland to tackle then they should draft Ohio State guard Wyatt Davis or USC guard Alijah Vera-Tucker. If Cleveland stays at guard then they need to take a left tackle like Christian Darrisaw from Virginia Tech or Sam Cosmi out of Texas.
In the later rounds they need to add depth at the defensive tackle position. They could possibly land Pitt tackle Jaylen Twyman in the third round. Outside of the trenches they need to add safety depth and look to take backup offensive linemen and receivers along with a backup quarterback.
1. Restructure Anthony Barr and Adam Thielens Contract
Barr and Thielen both have large contracts that if they aren’t willing to restructure, will hurt the Vikings in free agency. If these two vets want any chance to compete for a ring then they will take the unselfish route and take a pay cut to sign players that will fill immediate needs on the team.
There are many other small moves that Rick Spielman can make but, these are 5 very important ones. Spielman is a phenomenal draft day GM and I am super confident in our upcoming draft but, free agency is the biggest concern.