The first two days of free agency has been nothing short of insanely hectic for the Minnesota Vikings and the rest of the NFL. Deals and trades are happening at a pace that makes speed metal slow and cumbersome, and the Vikes were swept up in the frenzy. If the Vikings entry into free agency could be described as dipping the big toe into the pool on Tuesday, Wednesday was a headfirst plunge, and the water was cold and brisk.
Tuesday night rumors broke of the impending Donovan McNabb trade, it was finalized Wednesday, and will be announced sometime today. This trade seems to have as about as a mixed reaction as the Favre signing in 2009, although our poll on DN shows it's being fairly well received overall. We've expressed our views on McNabb, and quite frankly, I'm a bit torn.
Are the Vikings better at the quarterback position today than they were yesterday? Unquestionably, yes. I don't think anyone disputes that Christian Ponder will be the guy for the next decade, but I don't think there's any way he could be ready because of the limited amount of time he will have to learn the offense.
All of that said, I think there is a fair amount of 'Veteran Quarterback Fatigue' setting in among Vikings fans. Since 1992, the list of veteran, past their prime quarterbacks that have donned the purple and gold is as long as the Amy Winehouse toxicology report will probably be (oooh, too soon?):
Rich Gannon, Sean Salisbury, Jim McMahon, Warren Moon, Brad Johnson, Randall Cunningham, Jeff George, Daunte Culpepper (but not before Denny tried to coax Dan 'I only have one achilles heel' Marino out of retirement), Brad Johnson again, Kelly Holcomb, Brooks Bollinger, Tarvaris Jackson, Gus Frerotte, and Brett Favre, at some point, have taken snaps for the Vikings, and now we add Donovan McNabb to this list.
Really, Donovan, it's not you. It's the situation. I think McNabb was still trying to ove come his 2009 injury and still wasn't completely healthy last year, had no running game, and no serious receiving threat outside of Santana Moss. In Minnesota, McNabb has the best running back in football, Percy Harvin, Visanthe Shiancoe, Sidn--
Oh, yeah. Scratch Sidney Rice. He signed a big contract with the Seahawks, and Seattle included another poison pill provision---$18 million guaranteed. It was apparently too much for the Vikings, and Rice will now be reunited with Tarvaris Jackson. And excuse me, but if the money was close (no figures on what the Vikings offered) does Sid really think he'll do better in Seattle with Tarvaris Jackson throwing to him as opposed to Donovan McNabb?
Really? Hey, maybe TJ and El Sid are good friends, we have no way of knowing, but this smells like a guy chasing the money. And you know what? Good for him. Thanks for 2009, Sidney. Good luck to you in Seattle. I think three years from now, you'll see Christian Ponder lighjting up the NFL, and you'll kick yourself in the butt, but I'm not going to knock a guy for making a big payday. Life expectancy in the NFL is too short to leave money on the table, so get it while you can.
But there was really good news in the free agency front, as K Ryan Longwell re-signed, and will be back for automatic field goals and kickoffs that go to the 5. Longwell is about as automatic as it gets for kickers in the NFL, and getting him back was a great move.
So, where do the Vikings start out today? Now they need a WR, and there were some rumblings in the distance, much like a thunderstorm that is still miles away, that the Vikings might have interest in Braylon Edwards. There are several options out there, but I have to admit that I'm disappointed that the Vikings couldn't retain Sidney.
We had a couple of different opinions around theses parts about how valuable Sid is/was to the Vikings, and who replaces him will go a long way to see whether or not this move was a mistake.
There's still a lot for the Vikings to do besides WR today, as no draft picks have been signed yet, guys like Bernard Berrian and Madieu Williams may yet get their walking papers, and there are still holes on the defensive line that need to be adddressed.
So keep it right here, and post the latest tweets, rumors, incidents, accidents, hints, allegations, accusations, proclamations, and consternations.