We're well into the depths of the offseason, with Training Camp not officially getting underway for another seven weeks. So, while we're looking for things to talk about, we're going to ask some questions that will hopefully bring about some discussion.
In this case, that question is "Who is the Minnesota Vikings' most irreplaceable offensive player?"
Now, I understand where the popular logic is going to be with this one, and I understand why. The answer that most people are going to give is running back Adrian Peterson, and for good reason. He's coming off of his third regular season rushing title, and is the best player on the Minnesota offense.
But, at the risk of hurting the delicate feels of some folks, I'm going to posit that Peterson being the Vikings' best offensive player doesn't mean that he's the most irreplaceable.
The most irreplaceable player on the Vikings' offense is quarterback Teddy Bridgewater.
Yes, the Vikings' offense would likely suffer a bit with Peterson out for an extended period of time. The Minnesota running game would undoubtedly suffer as a result. Then again, as we saw towards the end of the 2014 season when Peterson was out, the Vikings were still able to generate a running game in his absence, and could even do some things that they couldn't ordinarily do in a Peterson-centric offense, such as run the ball out of the shotgun.
Alternatively. . .who wants to watch Shaun Hill quarterback this offense for the long term? Anybody? Honestly, I'm sure that Shaun Hill is a decent guy and a fine mentor and all that, but seriously. . .Hill got some time in last year's victory over the St. Louis Rams after Bridgewater got hurt, and played most of the fourth quarter and the overtime session. He completed two of six passes for 15 yards, and took an ugly 11-yard sack to give him a net total of four passing yards. Frankly, that's about all of the Shaun Hill Experience that I need to see for a while. Or ever, really.
The Vikings' offense would suffer in the absence of either Peterson or Bridgewater. While Adrian Peterson is clearly the better player at this point, given who the alternatives at each position would be, I think it would suffer more without Teddy Bridgewater than it would without Peterson. I'm not sure if there's anyone else on the Vikings' offense that could potentially be placed in the "irreplaceable" category at this point.
So, what do you think?