Former Vikings TE Visanthe Shiancoe signed a 1 year deal with New England earlier in the week, and although we're late in getting around to talk about it, late is better than never.
Shiancoe was a favorite around these parts, and thanks to Fearless Leader, 'To Shank!' became part of the DN lexicon. I'll admit that when he was first signed, I thought it was one of Brad Childress' colossal mistakes, but it turned out to be a great signing for the Vikings.
Shiancoe's first season and a half or so was one of maddening inconsistency for Shiancoe. He would make some difficult grabs, but then drop some of the easiest touchdown passes that one could imagine. But he worked at his game, he improved week after week, and he became a lethal threat. In 2008, he had a career best in receiving yards, and in 2009, he had career bests in catches (56), while becoming a lethal red zone threat for the 2009 Lightning in a Bottle team, grabbing 11 TD's.
Shiancoe became a fan favorite for his quotes, and was a real locker room leader, whether he was wearing clothes or not. But as the Vikings went from 12-4, to 6-10, and then 3-13, it became apparent that the Vikes were going to make the roster younger, and at 32, Shiancoe was low hanging fruit.
With the drafting of Kyle Rudolph last year, and the signing of free agent John Carlson this year, the writing was on the wall for Shank, and at the end of the season it was pretty obvious to everyone that he wasn't going to be re-signed. He still has some game left in him, and I think he'll be a great fit for the Patriots.
I'm glad that he'll be on a team that gives him an opportunity to win a Super Bowl ring, and if the Pats do win it all, they will be the first team in NFL history to field 10 tight ends and a quarterback for their offense.
Good luck to Shiancoe, and we're glad he landed on his feet.