We know that the Minnesota Vikings are going to be looking for options along the offensive line once free agency starts in a couple of weeks, and there are reports that a potential option is going to be medically cleared to play again.
Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune is reporting that guard Nick Easton, who missed all of last season with a back injury, has taken another trip out to his doctor, and the expectation is that he is going to be medically cleared to resume playing football again.
Easton was acquired by the Vikings in 2015 (along with a sixth-round draft choice) from the San Francisco 49ers for linebacker Gerald Hodges. He was set to be a restricted free agent last season, but the Vikings placed a second-round tender on him, giving him a salary of around $2.9 million. Easton then injured his back during the preseason and wound up being placed on injured reserve.
Easton was set to start at left guard for the Vikings again last season prior to his injury, and his absence threw things into flux once again. I’m not sure how much he’s going to be able to demand on the open market, given the fact that he is coming off of surgery, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Vikings bring him back on a fairly cheap deal to compete for a spot once again. The Vikings obviously liked him before, but that was under a different group of coaches.
I definitely wouldn’t be against the Vikings bringing Easton back, but they certainly can’t rely on him as they were in 2018. We’ll have to see if the team feels as strongly about him now as they did at this time about a year ago.