The depth chart at wide receiver for the Minnesota Vikings is pretty wide open behind Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs. One of the players that hasn’t really gotten a whole lot of mention around Vikings media could have a bigger role in 2019 than many people think based on what the purple did to keep him around.
Jeff Badet spent the 2018 season on the Vikings’ practice squad after signing as an undrafted free agent out of Oklahoma. After the season ended, Badet was apparently being courted by the New York Jets, but the Vikings did what they had to in order to keep him around.
According to Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, what they had to do was fork out an additional $75,000 on top of Badet’s base salary for next season.
After spending a year on the practice squad and learning how to “practice like a pro,” Badet told Tomasson that he’s ready to make an impact in 2019.
“Night and day,’’ Badet said. “My confidence level is up. I got a chance to go against (Minnesota defensive backs) Xavier Rhodes, Trae Waynes and (Mackensie Alexander) every day on the practice squad.
“Going into this year, I know what to expect. Last year, I didn’t know how the schedule is going, how to practice as a pro.’’
Badet started his college career at the University of Kentucky before transferring to Oklahoma for his final season. Though he wasn’t invited to the 2018 Scouting Combine, at the Oklahoma pro day that year he ran a faster 40-yard dash (4.27 seconds) than anyone that was at the Combine that season. He’s got speed. . .he said during last year’s Training Camp that he knew “he was the fastest guy on the Vikings”. . .and he’s also got some experience returning kickoffs, which is a role the Vikings could definitely use him in as well.
I understand that $75,000 isn’t a whole lot in the grand scheme of things in the National Football League, but it is interesting that the Vikings decided that keeping Badet around in 2019 was important enough to throw that extra little bit of sweetener in there.