Minnesota Vikings Express Interest In Paul Soliai

Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

We know that defensive tackle is a position that the Minnesota Vikings are going to have to address this off-season. With Kevin Williams likely having played his last game in purple, Fred Evans a free agent, and Letroy Guion already having been cut, the team is going to need someone to pair with Sharrif Floyd in the middle of the defensive line in 2014.

Per Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN in the Twin Cities, the Vikings have expressed an interest in Paul Soliai, who has played his entire seven-year career with the Miami Dolphins.

Soliai is what one might refer to as a pretty big dude. At 6'4" and 340 pounds. . .listed weight, mind you. . .he would certainly fill the mold of a run-stuffing defensive tackle in the mold of Pat Williams. Soliai was the Dolphins' fourth-round pick (#108 overall) out of Utah in the 2007 draft. He made it to the Pro Bowl in 2011, a season that he played under the franchise tag after he played out his rookie deal with the Dolphins.

Pro Football Focus thinks highly of Soliai as well, putting him at #7 on their list of interior defensive linemen available in free agency this year. Here's what they had to say about him.

Soliai is the only pure nose tackle/1-technique to make this Top 10, but calling him a run stuffer would be selling the tackle short. Soliai mainly played on run downs for the Dolphins, but his 5.0 pass rushing productivity beat out the likes of Dontari Poe and Damon Harrison. A seven-year veteran, Soliai has graded negatively just once in the PFF Era (2009). He may not come in and be a game changer for a team, but he can certainly shore up a team's run defense in a hurry. His cumulative run defense grade in the last four years is +22.1, and that came spread across two years in a 3-4 and two years in a 4-3. Soliai's scheme versatility will be attractive, but it will be interesting to see if he matches the two-year, $12M deal he signed back in 2012.

For a defense that needs help up front, Soliai would be a pretty nice pick-up. He's a little older than the players the Vikings generally look at in free agency, but with money to spend and a defense to fix, he might be pretty attractive to our favorite football team.

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