Well the Season is getting closer and there is lots of optimism for this years Vikings. I think they made some of the best moves with the coaching staff this year firing a head coach that can transform this defense into a top 15 defense and then him hiring an offensive coordinator that can actually has a track record with quarterbacks and doesn't believe in the same philosophy of run, run, pass, punt like Musgrave did. With all this being said I will now get on with what I believe the Vikings should do this upcoming Off-season.
in-house re signings
DE: Griffen- He has been a very good situational player on the defensive line. With Kevin Williams and Jared Allen leaving VIA free agency, I believe that Mike Zimmer will make it a priority to sign Griffen to a new contract. Getting to start on the line I believe Griffen could get to double digits, but if Griffen decides he wants to make a lot of money then Id say let him go because I don't believe they should overpay for him. I think a contract of 4 year/$27 million would be decent. If he wants more then let him walk.
DT: Evans- I believe that Evans can be had for cheap and will provide depth at the nose tackle position. Evans did draw a lot of penalties this year but I do like him better then Letroy Guion. Sign him to a 2 year/$3 million deal.
OT: Webb- Another one to sign for depth. Honestly I hope we end up replacing Loadholt because he's only an average right tackle and the quarterback is always being helped up by him since he let the quarterback get sacked in the first place. Webb made $630,000 in 2013 and I'd be okay with signing him to a 2 year/$1,650,000 deal
CB: Sherels- A signing i believe that needs to be done. Even though he is a restricted free agent, i could see teams try and get him. Sherels has amazed me with how he has developed into a dangerous punt returner and how he has gotten better at the corner back position. He made the same as Webb in 2013 with a salary of $630,000 and I believe that Sherels is worth more then I gave Webb. Sign Sherels to a 3 year/$3 million deal
LB: Dean- The best player on special teams, I believe Zimmer will retain his services for cheap. Sign him to a 2 year/$1.5 million
OG: Olsen- He has done a good job when needing to step in. He is quality as a backup and could step in if we are plagued with injuries. 2 year/$1.6 Million.
CB: Cook?- I'm not quite on page with his one but Zimmer is known for getting players to play better and If anything will be a backup, so he doesn't get hurt so often. If we do retain Cook i'd say give him a prove it deal similar to Jerome Simpson if he will accept it. 1 year/$1.75 million
CB: Verner- A pro-bowl corner in 2013 would make a huge difference in our secondary. Verner had 4 interceptions last year and that's 4 more then any of our starting corners had in 2013. Plus we might have an inside track at getting him since we hired his former defensive backs coach to be our defensive coordinator. 5 year/$32.5 Million deal
S: Delmas- Quite a few were surprised about his release from Detroit but reading more about him he has been injury prone. As a Vikings fan i have heard his name plenty when he has made plays against us and I believe he still has big play abilities. If he can stay healthy I think he could be an upgrade playing next to Harrison Smith and possibly even draft a safety to split time with him and step in if he goes out with another injury. 2 year/$7 Million deal.
QB: Cassel- I understand why he decided to opt out of his contract but I think Minnesota should have done something to keep him. He might be a stop gap but I will always prefer him over Christian Ponder. He did something that Ponder could never do consistently which is throw the ball deep, and he also isn't scared for his life in the pocket. Speilman met with Cassel's Agent during the combine and i believe a deal will get done. I think he'd agree to a 2 year/$10 million deal. He will be a decent starting quarterback while helping a rookie develop.
DT: Joseph- I would love to see Linval Joseph in purple and gold. If we have the money, I don't see why Minnesota wouldn't try and sign him. We have been missing a run stuffing Nose tackle since we let big Pat Williams walk. With a run stuffing NT it would put less pressure on our linebackers and be better for everyone else. If we have enough money left I'd say sign him to a 4 year/$26-27 million
The 2014 NFL DRAFT
RD. 1 (8) Trade. I don't know if Cleveland would want our 8th overall pick but with the Browns needing some star power players, I could see them making the trade and getting 2 picks in the top 10. I'd love to see Minnesota trade back to the 26th overall pick and receive Cleveland's 2nd round, 3rd round (19), and a 6th round pick in return. This would give Speilman the double digit draft picks that he wants.
RD. 1 (26) Kyle Van Noy- OLB from BYU. Standing at 6"3/235 pounds, Van Noy would be a great addition to a struggling defense that allowed the most points in the NFL in 2013. Van Noy is a good tackler, and also can get after the quarterback. He will be a huge upgrade over Erin Henderson
RD 2a. Jimmy Garoppolo- QB (Eastern Illinois). Everyone has been raving over this kid lately. At first I didn't even know about Jimmy G, But after doing my research on him I think that he will be a special kid who could develop into a very good starting quarterback. He's a very smart player and even though he is very good on short and intermediate routes, he has the arm strength to air it out. He also has the quickness to escape the pocket if it starts to collapse. With a year or 2 under Matt Cassel and Norv Turner, I believe Jimmy G will be a better quarterback then what we have had in recent years.
RD 2b. Lamarcus Joyner- CB 5"8 (Florida State). How amazing would it be to get a player with this kind of talent. Joyner is listed as a Safety but also played the slot corner position. Yahoo sports compares him to a certain former fan favorite in Minnesota (Antoine Winfield). If we sign Joyner I'd slide him to the slot position and move Josh Robinson back to being an outside corner where he excelled in at the collegiate level. Not saying that Robinson would start there but I'd rather him be a backup there then be picked on all the time at the slot position.
RD 3a. Shayne Skov- ILB 6"3 (Stanford). He would be a huge pickup if he is still here at the point. A lot of people might give me crap for signing another linebacker but it's obvious that we need someone to man the middle. I do really like the way Audie Cole played when he came in last year in relief of Erin Henderson but what if he can't be a consistent play maker? Skov was the leader of a really good defense at Stanford and he would fit perfectly in Minnesota
RD 3b. Brandon Linder- OG 6"5 (Miami). I read a report that analysts think that Linder will go in the third round and will be a day 1 starting offensive guard. That being said, I'm sure Linder could come in here and compete with Jeff Baca for the other starting guard opposite from Fusco.
RD 3c. Trade. I think with 2 picks in the 2nd round Speilman could make a trade to get another pick for next years draft.
RD 4. Ahmad Dixon- S 6"0 (Baylor). I don't know if we will sign a safety in free agency but either way I'd be okay with grabbing Dixon out of Baylor. He is known as a smart and hard hitting safety who can come up and wrap up the ball carrier and also can drop back into coverage and make plays. He could make a good addition to this secondary.
RD 5. Ross Cockrell- CB 6"0 (Duke). I finally go with a corner here in the 5th round. With signing Verner in free agency and drafting Joyner to man the slot i felt like we could slide on corner and fill some other holes we have on defense. He would be added as depth to a one of our worst positions last year.
I'm kinda running out of time So I'm going to stop here. Thank you Vikings fans for reading my post and feel free to leave comments on how you thought I did. SKOL VIKES!