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 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transactions) 
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Post 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transactions)
2016 Vikings' Team Free Agents

Robert Blanton - UFA - Status: Signed by Buffalo: 1 year/Unknown terms

Chad Greenway - UFA - Status: Re-signed: Unknown terms

Terrence Newman - UFA - Status: Re-signed: 1 year/3 million

Josh Robinson - UFA - Status: Signed by Tampa Bay: Unknown terms

Rhett Ellison - UFA - Status: Re-signed: 1 year/2.25 million

Mike Harris - UFA - Status: Re-signed: 1 year/3 million

Marcus Sherels - UFA - Status: Re-signed: 2 years/4 million

Andrew Sendejo - UFA - Status: Re-signed: 4 years/16 million

Matt Asiata - UFA - Status: Re-signed: 1 year/Unknown terms

Audie Cole - UFA - Status: Re-signed: 1 year for unknown terms

Zach Line - RFA - Status: Tendered at 1 year/$1.3 million

Adam Thielen - ERFA - Status: Re-signed for 1 year/ $650,000

Casey Matthews - UFA - Status:

Kendrick Ellis - UFA - Status: Re-signed: One year deal for Unknown Terms

Carter Bykowski - ERFA - Status: Re-signed: 1 year/$550,000

Jason Trusink - UFA - Status:

Justin Tratou - UFA - Status: Re-signed: 1 year/Unknown terms

Rumors

2/1/16 - Vikings are interested in re-signing Chad Greenway (source: walterfootball.com)

2/3/16 - Vikings are interested in re-signing Terence Newman (source: walterfootball.com)

2/10/16 - Mike Wallace is not expected back in Minnesota in 2016 (source: walterfootball.com)

2/13/16 - Matt Kalil or Phil Loadholt will be a cap casualty in 2016 (source: walterfootball.com)

2/16/16 - Team is NOT expected to use the Franchise Tag (source: vikings.com)

3/1/16 - Wallace and team are discussing payout (source: Daily Norseman)

3/2/16 - Vikings one of many teams interested in Adam Jones (source: PFT)

3/5/16 - Charles Johnson will visit with the team in the coming week (source: walterfootball.com)

3/9/16 - Minnesota has interest in WR Andre Holmes. Holmes was once a UDFA of the team in 2011 (source: ESPN).

3/9/16 - Minnesota agrees in principle to a one-year deal with G Mike Harris (source: ESPN)

3/14/16 - Mike Wallace could still return to Minnesota (source: NFLN)

News (Reported stories/Confirmed stories)

Vikings Re-sign Andrew Sendejo to four-year deal (source: Ian Rapport)

Vikings Re-sign Kendrick Ellis to a one-year deal (source: Star Tribune)

Vikings Re-sign Adam Thielen and Carter Bukowski (source: KTSP)

Vikings Tender Zach Line (source: Star Tribune)

Vikings Restructure OT Phil Loadholt - save 3.4 million in cap (source: KTSP)

Vikings Re-sign LB Audie Cole (source: Star Tribune)

Vikings Release WR Mike Wallace (source: vikings.com)

Vikings Agree to terms with G Alex Boone (source: ESPN)

Vikings Agree to terms with LB Travis Lewis (source: ESPN)

Minnesota agrees in principle to a one-year deal with G Mike Harris (source: ESPN)

Vikings agree to terms with LB Emmaneul Lamur (source: ESPN)

Vikings agree to terms with SS Michael Griffin (source: ESPN 1500)

Vikings re-sign DE Justin Tratou (source: Star Tribune)

Vikings re-sign Marcus Sherels (source: Star Tribune)

Vikings re-sign TE Rhett Ellison

Vikings re-sign CB Terrence Newman

Vikings re-sign HB Matt Asiata

Vikings agree to a contract with OT Andre Smith

Vikings agree to contract with TE Brian Leonhardt

Transactions

3/7/16 - Vikings Restructure OT Phil Loadholt - save 3.4 million in cap (source: KTSP)

3/8/16 - Vikings Release WR Mike Wallace (source: vikings.com)

3/8/16 - Vikings officially re-sign Kendrick Ellis (source: vikings.com)

3/8/16 - Vikings officially re-sign Audie Cole (source: vikings.com)

3/14/16 - Vikings officially sign Michael Griffin (source: vikings.com)

3/14/16 - Vikings re-sign Justin Tratou (source: vikings.com)

3/14/16 - Vikings re-sign Marcus Sherels (source: vikings.com)

3/15/16 - Vikings re-sign Rhett Ellison (source: vikings.com)

3/15/16 - Vikings re-sign Terrence Newman (source: Star Tribune)

3/16/16 - Vikings re-sign Matt Asiata (source: Star Tribune)

3/17/16 - Vikings sign Andre Smith (source: vikings.com)

3/21/16 - Vikings sign Brian Leonhardt (source: vikings.com)

4-4-16 - Vikings agree to re-sign Chad Greenway (source: ESPN 1500)

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Last edited by HardcoreVikesFan on Thu Apr 07, 2016 1:54 pm, edited 28 times in total.



Sat Feb 13, 2016 10:54 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
I was looking through a list of NFL.com's top 20 UFA this offseason and I figured I'd post here to add to the discussion...

Top 20 2016 Unrestricted free agents

Every game, all season

1. Von Miller, Denver Broncos linebacker: Miller has been one of the best overall defensive players in the league since he was drafted. He's as strong stopping the run as he is coming off the edge. There's no way the Broncos will let him hit the market.

2. Josh Norman, Carolina Panthers cornerback: There's nothing like having your breakout season in a contract year. Norman has been the best cornerback in football this year and is a legitimate Defensive Player of the Year candidate. He's not going anywhere.

3. Muhammad Wilkerson, New York Jets defensive end: Sheldon Richardson and Leonard Williams were splashy draft pick additions, but Wilkerson is still the best defensive lineman on the Jets. New York has played hardball in negotiations thus far with Wilkerson, but the franchise tag has to be an option here.

4. Alshon Jeffery, Chicago Bears wide receiver: He might not be the most refined receiver in the league, but few are better at catching deep balls. He's fourth in the league in receiving yards-per-game and topped 1,400 yards in 2013.

5. Cordy Glenn, Buffalo Bills offensive tackle: True franchise left tackles are awfully hard to find. That's why he's a strong candidate for the franchise tag.

6. Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants defensive end: He's still disruptive despite playing with a club over his injured hand. There has to be a chance JPP will only get better as he learns how best to play with his disadvantage, and the ceiling here is tremendous. Still, he has struggled to wrap up opposing running backs. Can he finish plays?

7. Eric Berry, Kansas City Chiefs safety: Berry has come back from his cancer scare better than ever. Strong safety play is hard to find and Berry has the versatility teams are looking for.

8. Malik Jackson, Broncos defensive tackle: Like Norman, he's having a career year in a contract season. It's hard to find interior pass rushers like Jackson just entering his prime.

9. Olivier Vernon, Dolphins defensive end: The other Dolphins pass rusher opposite Cameron Wake has dialed up a lot of pressure over the last three years, even if he doesn't always finish the play with a sack. He's clearly an above average pass rush starter, which is going to make him a very rich man. Expectations are he'll leave Miami, who can only afford to pay so much on their defensive line.

10. Doug Martin, Buccaneers running back: He won't make the same money as the guys listed above (and below) him here because of the position he plays, but no one has helped their value more this season. Martin has gone from an afterthought to the No. 2 rusher in the NFL.


11. Bruce Irvin, Seattle Seahawks linebacker: He isn't a defense-changing talent, but he's also better than you think. Irvin is a quality versatile starter.

12. Russell Okung, Seahawks tackle: Even if Okung is only an average starter, he's going to get paid in this market. If he makes it there.

13. Eric Weddle, San Diego Chargers safety: Weddle has a skill set that tons of teams are looking for to shore up the back end of their defenses. His age (30) works against him, but few safeties have been better over the last five years.

14. Sam Bradford, Philadelphia Eagles quarterback: This season has not helped Bradford's value, yet there would be no shortage of teams willing to give Bradford a try if the Eagles don't want to re-sign him.

15. Kirk Cousins, Washington Redskins quarterback: Replacement level starting quarterbacks are worth plenty, and that appears to be Cousins' floor. At worst, he's a poor man's Andy Dalton with room to improve over time. He has more value to the Redskins than anyone else.

16. Matt Forte, Bears running back: One of the league's most complete backs has not shown many signs of age yet. Perhaps he should be paired with another quality option, but there's no doubt he could upgrade many backfields.

17. Andre Smith, Cincinnati Bengals right tackle: How will Smith react to getting paid big bucks (again)? While his career has included some ups and downs, Smith has often been a top-shelf starter.

18. Danny Trevathan, Broncos linebacker: Trevathan is a three-down linebacker entering his prime that can hold up in pass coverage. We're big fans of his skill set and he's just the type of above-average starter that gets paid like a superstar in free agency.

19. Janoris Jenkins, St. Louis Rams cornerback: He's steadily improved each season in the league and now is a playmaking starter.

20. Brock Osweiler, Broncos quarterback: It's hard to imagine John Elway letting his promising young starter hit the market, although this will be a tricky contract to pull off.

Just missed: Derrick Johnson, Chris Ivory, Kelvin Beachum, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Haloti Ngata, Lamar Miller, Prince Amukamara, Anquan Boldin.



http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap300000 ... s-for-2016


Sun Feb 14, 2016 10:17 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Top guys for Minnesota to target in my opinion would be Von Miller, Muhammad Wilkerson, Alshon Jeffery, Cordy Glenn and Eric Berry. Maybe Andre Smith.

I assume a few, if not all, of they guys either stay put by re-signing or getting slapped with the franchise tag.


I like Eric Weddle a lot, but his age relative to position makes it too risky in my opinion.


Sun Feb 14, 2016 10:22 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Lol, how much money do you think the Vikings have?

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Sun Feb 14, 2016 12:29 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Are you implying that I think they can sign all of them? :lol: No.

I'm saying of that list, those are the guys I'd want. Who they can actually get will sort itself out.


Sun Feb 14, 2016 12:39 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
i'd love to add bruce irvin and george iloka to our defense.


Sun Feb 14, 2016 7:02 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
slapnut19 wrote:
i'd love to add bruce irvin and george iloka to our defense.


It would be really nice to add a Safety in free agency.


Mon Feb 15, 2016 8:20 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
I'm not so sure about Bruce Irvin. He's definitely serviceable and he showed improvement year over year in Seattle, but he might be someone who gets paid more than his actual worth (Who doesn't though?). He would give the Vikes another pass rusher and I'm sure Zimmer could get the most out of him, so it will be interesting to see if they do it, considering it would be a depth/pass rush specialist move.


Mon Feb 15, 2016 10:32 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
slapnut19 wrote:
i'd love to add bruce irvin and george iloka to our defense.


I would definitely take Iloka but not Irvin. Never been a big fan of his.

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Mon Feb 15, 2016 10:37 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Quote:
If this guard makes it to the open market then @austincbelisle thinks Spielman should make reservations at Manny's.


http://vikingsterritory.com/2016/analysis/18726

Quote:
At the time, offensive line coach Juan Castillo marveled at Osemele’s ability to finish plays . “The way ‘K.O’ finishes every play is incredible,” he said in an interview with ESPN. “I don’t know that there’s anybody in the NFL that finishes better than he does.” Osemele’s “finisher” mentality was on full display in one of the team’s most important 2014 games. Late in the Ravens’ playoff matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Osemele obliterated linebacker James Harrison, giving Joe Flacco enough time to find Torrey Smith for a touchdown pass.

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Mon Feb 15, 2016 11:29 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
dead_poet wrote:
Quote:
If this guard makes it to the open market then @austincbelisle thinks Spielman should make reservations at Manny's.


http://vikingsterritory.com/2016/analysis/18726

Quote:
At the time, offensive line coach Juan Castillo marveled at Osemele’s ability to finish plays . “The way ‘K.O’ finishes every play is incredible,” he said in an interview with ESPN. “I don’t know that there’s anybody in the NFL that finishes better than he does.” Osemele’s “finisher” mentality was on full display in one of the team’s most important 2014 games. Late in the Ravens’ playoff matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers, Osemele obliterated linebacker James Harrison, giving Joe Flacco enough time to find Torrey Smith for a touchdown pass.


The only strong argument I could make against signing him is that Interior OL is a deep position in this draft. There seem to be a lot of guys who will be starters at G entering the league this year. There might be spots that can only be addressed through FA or player development, that might be more urgent as a result.


Mon Feb 15, 2016 11:41 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
fiestavike wrote:
The only strong argument I could make against signing him is that Interior OL is a deep position in this draft. There seem to be a lot of guys who will be starters at G entering the league this year. There might be spots that can only be addressed through FA or player development, that might be more urgent as a result.


Potentially. Then again it's not often that a rookie offensive lineman steps in immediately and is an asset. Would you want to take a chance at a guy being equal to or worse than Fusco was last season in the short term (effectively not improving arguably the worst position on the line that was a major liability) in the short-term (hoping he ends up a Pro-Bowler) or sign a guy now that you know will fix the spot as soon as the ink dries?

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Mon Feb 15, 2016 11:51 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
dead_poet wrote:
fiestavike wrote:
The only strong argument I could make against signing him is that Interior OL is a deep position in this draft. There seem to be a lot of guys who will be starters at G entering the league this year. There might be spots that can only be addressed through FA or player development, that might be more urgent as a result.


Potentially. Then again it's not often that a rookie offensive lineman steps in immediately and is an asset. Would you want to take a chance at a guy being equal to or worse than Fusco was last season in the short term (effectively not improving arguably the worst position on the line that was a major liability) in the short-term (hoping he ends up a Pro-Bowler) or sign a guy now that you know will fix the spot as soon as the ink dries?


I hear ya. I certainly won't be upset if they add a player like Osemele.


Mon Feb 15, 2016 12:48 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
That may be true of like 5th rounders from little rock but if you take a lineman in the first or second round I'd have no concerns about them plugging in and being better than the garbage we saw last year. Kalil's rookie year comes to mind.


Mon Feb 15, 2016 1:10 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
dead_poet wrote:
Potentially. Then again it's not often that a rookie offensive lineman steps in immediately and is an asset. Would you want to take a chance at a guy being equal to or worse than Fusco was last season in the short term (effectively not improving arguably the worst position on the line that was a major liability) in the short-term (hoping he ends up a Pro-Bowler) or sign a guy now that you know will fix the spot as soon as the ink dries?


Poet I disagree slightly on this take. Ex. The Iupati signing last year. Iupati is a pro-bowl caliber guard, but it took him the better part of the half the season to really gel with his AZ teammates. So in the context of a Rookie vs. FA signing I think we expect there will be several games of "Growing pains" for either type of addition to the OL. The main difference between the two is with the FA guy you have a better idea of his ability to produce in the NFL game and he will have a much higher cap hit. The rookie has more uncertainty, but is much more cap friendly.

Given that interior OL is deep in this draft, my guess is they might gamble and use the 23rd pick to take a G and spend FA on a S if they can get one. There are few good ones that could potentially hit the market this offseason.

I dissagree with the OP that Kalil and Loadholt will be cap casualities this offseason. After the season Clemmings it would be shocking that they drop Loadholt unless he has an injury issue.

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Mon Feb 15, 2016 1:15 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
mansquatch wrote:
I dissagree with the OP that Kalil and Loadholt will be cap casualities this offseason. After the season Clemmings it would be shocking that they drop Loadholt unless he has an injury issue.


What makes it tricky is that they will have free agency and the draft BEFORE they will know whether Loadholt will have an injury issue.

There' is real uncertainty at LT, LG, C, and RT, not to mention the RG is a free agent. Can the Vikings afford not to settle some of those positions going into the season? Loadholt, Sully, Fusco and Kalil could all return to peak form, but if they don't, the Vikings will be handcuffed to lousy players with no backup plan. If they keep Kalil, Sullivan and Loadholt at current salaries, it will be hard to address the OL in free agency, leaving them having to draft a backup plan instead of going BPA, or go completely without a backup plan.

I tend to be pretty risk averse, but it seems like there might be more risk in keeping those players and hoping for the best than there is in moving on, and building a unit with a higher floor, even if they have a lower ceiling in the short term. Look at what the Raiders did last season for an example.


Mon Feb 15, 2016 3:27 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
fiestavike wrote:
mansquatch wrote:
I dissagree with the OP that Kalil and Loadholt will be cap casualities this offseason. After the season Clemmings it would be shocking that they drop Loadholt unless he has an injury issue.


What makes it tricky is that they will have free agency and the draft BEFORE they will know whether Loadholt will have an injury issue.

There' is real uncertainty at LT, LG, C, and RT, not to mention the RG is a free agent. Can the Vikings afford not to settle some of those positions going into the season? Loadholt, Sully, Fusco and Kalil could all return to peak form, but if they don't, the Vikings will be handcuffed to lousy players with no backup plan. If they keep Kalil, Sullivan and Loadholt at current salaries, it will be hard to address the OL in free agency, leaving them having to draft a backup plan instead of going BPA, or go completely without a backup plan.

I tend to be pretty risk averse, but it seems like there might be more risk in keeping those players and hoping for the best than there is in moving on, and building a unit with a higher floor, even if they have a lower ceiling in the short term. Look at what the Raiders did last season for an example.


I agree completely. It'd be one thing if we were like the #1 line in football pre injuries but the bottom line is that they weren't very good to begin with and now there is injury concern. It's riskier to try and maintain status quo to hopefully be average than it is to just start over trying to be great.

By moving on you can wipe the slate clean. With a new o-line coach we should go all out on getting the guys he wants and rebuild the whole thing if necessary. Chemistry and cohesion shouldn't even be a factor for a line that was mediocre under more ideal circumstances.

With that said if Sparano likes a guy, then of course we can keep him. But imagine Sparano says he doesn't want any of these guys or half of them or whatever. We gotta make moves to inspire change and stop aiming for "hopefully we can be mediocre" and instead try and be great.


Mon Feb 15, 2016 4:31 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
fiestavike wrote:
What makes it tricky is that they will have free agency and the draft BEFORE they will know whether Loadholt will have an injury issue.


Do you mean issues surrounding his recovery? I wouldn't worry too much about that. Loadholt will keep the medical (and the others that need to know) up to date regarding his recovery, which, by the way, seems to be right on track.

Quote:
There' is real uncertainty at LT, LG, C, and RT, not to mention the RG is a free agent. Can the Vikings afford not to settle some of those positions going into the season?


I'm pretty sure they'll have settled those positions once the season starts. :)

Quote:
I tend to be pretty risk averse, but it seems like there might be more risk in keeping those players and hoping for the best than there is in moving on, and building a unit with a higher floor, even if they have a lower ceiling in the short term.


I don't know if it's any more risk keeping those guys vs. moving on and hoping a new unit performs better. Especially when we know how important continuity, communicaiton and familiarity is with the offensive line.

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Mon Feb 15, 2016 4:40 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
mondry wrote:
It'd be one thing if we were like the #1 line in football pre injuries but the bottom line is that they weren't very good to begin with


Injuries have played a huge role in not getting the most out of this line. I'm not sure we've ever seen what the "top" offensive linemen we have on our roster can all do together as a healthy unit.

2012:

LT Matt Kalil (Pro Bowl)/asset
LG: Charlie Johnson (awful) liability
C: John Sullivan (Pro Football Writers Association's All-Pro team)/asset
RG: Brandon Fusco (below average in first seasons starting)/liability
RT: Phil Loadholt (average player at this point, not great in pass protection & above-average run-blocker)/neutral-asset

2013:

LT Matt Kalil: Injury-plagued/liability
LG: Charlie Johnson: liability
C: John Sullivan: asset
RG: Brandon Fusco (improving)/asset
RT: Phil Loadholt (improving)/asset

2014:

LT: Matt Kalil: Injury-plagued/liability
LG: Charlie Johnson (older/awful)/liability
C: John Sullivan (top-5 center)/asset
RG: Brandon Fusco (3 games)/Vladimir Ducasse (awful/liability)
RT: Phil Loadholt (12 games)/Mike Harris (average/neutral)

2015:

LT: Matt Kalil: (healthy-ish): Average/neutral
LG: Brandon Fusco (playing out of primary position): liability
C: Joe Berger: asset
RG: Mike Harris: asset
RT: TJ Clemmings: liability

We have yet to see what a healthy line of Kalil, LG, Sullivan, Fusco/Harris, Loadholt looks like. The LG spot has been a liability since 2009. It's possible that if they shore up the LG spot (and Kalil stays healthy) that the rest of those guys can actually field a good-great unit.

Quote:
By moving on you can wipe the slate clean. With a new o-line coach we should go all out on getting the guys he wants and rebuild the whole thing if necessary. Chemistry and cohesion shouldn't even be a factor for a line that was mediocre under more ideal circumstances.


I'm not sure how losing two of your top offensive linemen can be considered ideal circumstances. And it's really, really unlikely a team fields the type of change many have advocated over the course of a single offseason. If we see two new starters come opening day I'd be pretty surprised, actually.

Quote:
With that said if Sparano likes a guy, then of course we can keep him. But imagine Sparano says he doesn't want any of these guys or half of them or whatever. We gotta make moves to inspire change and stop aiming for "hopefully we can be mediocre" and instead try and be great.


We also must be careful to change for the sake of change. If anything I think what we've also seen are depth limitations. Losing two starters really screwed a lot up. Getting Sullivan and Loadholt back could be/feel like signing two of the league's top offensive linemen (conservatively top-10 at their respective positions), assuming their full recoveries.

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Mon Feb 15, 2016 5:07 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
http://www.vikings.com/news/lunch-break ... 3b97380dcb

Vikings Not Expected to Use Franchise Tag

Not anything earth-shattering here.

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Wed Feb 17, 2016 8:36 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Also, I forgot to ask: Can a moderator or Cliff sticky this post? That way, it doesn't have a chance to be lost on the board. Thank you.

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Wed Feb 17, 2016 12:43 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Looks like Kelechi Osemele is set to become a free agent I think we need to sign him, at 26 he is at the perfect age and could replace Kalil, or Loadholt for close to the same price. Also with ridding ourselves of Wallace's cap space it shouldnt be an issue. Osemele seems like a guy the vikings would bring in.

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Wed Feb 17, 2016 5:54 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
The cap raises this offseason right? 12 million increase?


Wed Feb 17, 2016 6:11 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
dead_poet wrote:
mondry wrote:
It'd be one thing if we were like the #1 line in football pre injuries but the bottom line is that they weren't very good to begin with


Injuries have played a huge role in not getting the most out of this line. I'm not sure we've ever seen what the "top" offensive linemen we have on our roster can all do together as a healthy unit.

2012:

LT Matt Kalil (Pro Bowl)/asset
LG: Charlie Johnson (awful) liability
C: John Sullivan (Pro Football Writers Association's All-Pro team)/asset
RG: Brandon Fusco (below average in first seasons starting)/liability
RT: Phil Loadholt (average player at this point, not great in pass protection & above-average run-blocker)/neutral-asset

2013:

LT Matt Kalil: Injury-plagued/liability
LG: Charlie Johnson: liability
C: John Sullivan: asset
RG: Brandon Fusco (improving)/asset
RT: Phil Loadholt (improving)/asset

2014:

LT: Matt Kalil: Injury-plagued/liability
LG: Charlie Johnson (older/awful)/liability
C: John Sullivan (top-5 center)/asset
RG: Brandon Fusco (3 games)/Vladimir Ducasse (awful/liability)
RT: Phil Loadholt (12 games)/Mike Harris (average/neutral)

2015:

LT: Matt Kalil: (healthy-ish): Average/neutral
LG: Brandon Fusco (playing out of primary position): liability
C: Joe Berger: asset
RG: Mike Harris: asset
RT: TJ Clemmings: liability

We have yet to see what a healthy line of Kalil, LG, Sullivan, Fusco/Harris, Loadholt looks like. The LG spot has been a liability since 2009. It's possible that if they shore up the LG spot (and Kalil stays healthy) that the rest of those guys can actually field a good-great unit.

Quote:
By moving on you can wipe the slate clean. With a new o-line coach we should go all out on getting the guys he wants and rebuild the whole thing if necessary. Chemistry and cohesion shouldn't even be a factor for a line that was mediocre under more ideal circumstances.


I'm not sure how losing two of your top offensive linemen can be considered ideal circumstances. And it's really, really unlikely a team fields the type of change many have advocated over the course of a single offseason. If we see two new starters come opening day I'd be pretty surprised, actually.

Quote:
With that said if Sparano likes a guy, then of course we can keep him. But imagine Sparano says he doesn't want any of these guys or half of them or whatever. We gotta make moves to inspire change and stop aiming for "hopefully we can be mediocre" and instead try and be great.


We also must be careful to change for the sake of change. If anything I think what we've also seen are depth limitations. Losing two starters really screwed a lot up. Getting Sullivan and Loadholt back could be/feel like signing two of the league's top offensive linemen (conservatively top-10 at their respective positions), assuming their full recoveries.


Good breakdown poet! Honestly, at this point I don't think we'll ever see Kalil, Fusco, Sullivan, Harris and Loadholt all healthy at the same time. And two of them, Sullivan and Loadholt are aging. Although I feel like an offensive linemans age can go much further than other positions. Lineman can still be very solid into their low-mid 30's.

We need to sign a good guard or tackle in FA and draft the other early. Get some depth signings along the way. Center is a huge question mark right now because you don't know if Sully can recover from this back issue or not. Harris is the only one that is a must keep right now IMO. It's going to be a crap shoot with everyone else. One tackle definitely has to go (Kalil/Loadholt), I have no problem keeping Sully if he's healthy, Fusco probably needs to be cut at this point (too much money and I think Harris is a better RG and Fusco can't stay at LG)

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Wed Feb 17, 2016 10:32 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
dead_poet wrote:
fiestavike wrote:
What makes it tricky is that they will have free agency and the draft BEFORE they will know whether Loadholt will have an injury issue.


Do you mean issues surrounding his recovery? I wouldn't worry too much about that. Loadholt will keep the medical (and the others that need to know) up to date regarding his recovery, which, by the way, seems to be right on track.



I don't think the doctors, the team, or Loadholt will fully know how it will affect him until he's in OTAs. He's not a guy who can afford to lose a nanosecond of reaction time. He's always been whipped pretty good by speed rushers as it was. Where is his strength and how long will it take him to get it back. In the interview posted with Fusco, he said he never got his strength up to snuff all season long after recovering from a torn pectoral the season before. The same might well be the case for Sullivan and Loadholt too.

The Vikings may have the same take you do, and feel like they can plan on Loadholt, Sully and Kalil coming back and playing at starting caliber.
I just think thats a recipe for a very poor offensive line. I'm pretty risk averse, and I just find that plan to be too risky for my taste.


Thu Feb 18, 2016 8:35 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Looks like the Eagles are signing MBT


Thu Feb 18, 2016 10:33 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
10 Players Who Could Surprise in NFL Free Agency

Quote:
9. Mitchell Schwartz, RT, Browns (age 26)
He’s not a dark horse to NFL insiders. A majority of teams could use an upgrade at right tackle. The fifth-year pro, who was drafted in the second round by the Browns and quietly improved each season, is as steady as they come. The rise in shotgun formations has diminished the whole blindside thing, making left tackles only nominally more valuable than right tackles. Don’t decry your team if it signs Schwartz to a nearly eight-figure annual deal with more than $25 million guaranteed.


Thu Feb 18, 2016 10:44 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
vatusay wrote:
Looks like the Eagles are signing MBT


http://www.csnphilly.com/football-phila ... l-thompson


Thu Feb 18, 2016 10:45 am
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Pondering Her Percy wrote:
Honestly, at this point I don't think we'll ever see Kalil, Fusco, Sullivan, Harris and Loadholt all healthy at the same time.


Just because we haven't seen that yet doesn't mean it can't happen. I still maintain that it's in the realm of possibility that Loadholt and Sullivan are ready to go by week 1. Fusco is over a year removed from his pec injury and Harris doesn't have any kind of injury that I'm aware of. Kalil and his knees are the wild card but if he can avoid any type of surgery this offseason it's possible he actually improves from 2015 (when he wasn't a complete liability and actually and some good games against tough pass rushers like Ansah). Frankly, getting rid of Clemmings at RT should immediately upgrade the line.

Quote:
And two of them, Sullivan and Loadholt are aging. Although I feel like an offensive linemans age can go much further than other positions. Lineman can still be very solid into their low-mid 30's.


Exactly! People are acting like they're both 37. Phil and Sully are both just 30! I wouldn't characterize them yet as being "injury prone." Sullivan has had a couple concussions but other than Phil's pec and now healing Achilles they don't strike me as guys that have any kind of "chronic" issues, at least perhaps none more than the average NFL player (with the caveat that Sullivan's back makes me a bit nervous, just because I don't know a lot about the injury). They could both just as easily be starting (and effective) for the next three years.

Quote:
We need to sign a good guard or tackle in FA and draft the other early. Get some depth signings along the way. Center is a huge question mark right now because you don't know if Sully can recover from this back issue or not. Harris is the only one that is a must keep right now IMO. It's going to be a crap shoot with everyone else. One tackle definitely has to go (Kalil/Loadholt), I have no problem keeping Sully if he's healthy, Fusco probably needs to be cut at this point (too much money and I think Harris is a better RG and Fusco can't stay at LG)
[/quote]

I disagree that a tackle "has to go." We can get buy with Kalil playing like he did in weeks 1-12. OTs have come back and played very well after Achilles injuries as well so I'm not cutting Phil unless it's clear the injury affected him more than others, rendering him a liability. I'm OK with grooming Clemmings. We have to remember he had very limited OT experience prior being drafted so he has the "raw" label that could be Phil's replacement in a few seasons (or a decent backup). Fusco was abysmal on the left side but more than competent on the right. As I pointed out in a separate post, it took Fusco a few seasons to make the transition from college center to good NFL RG. It's not beyond the realm of possibility that if the Vikings want Fusco to stay at LG that he improves. His contract isn't excessive. I'd prefer he compete with Harris at RG and sign an above-average LG in FA or, at worst, no later than R3 in the draft if the right guy falls. I do agree that we need to draft a rookie center, though. Unless they have a young guy on the roster they're really excited about (though I'm not sure the UDFA guy(s) can be penciled in to start in a few years even if they make the 53 this season).

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Thu Feb 18, 2016 12:44 pm
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Post Re: 2016 Vikings Free Agency Thread (News, Rumors, Transacti
Vikings have to be the front-runners for Iloka, right? Assuming they're interested, but I don't see why the heck they wouldn't be.


Thu Feb 18, 2016 1:07 pm
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