Defensive lineman Kenny Willekes, one of the Vikings’ four seventh-round picks in this past April’s Draft, came to terms on his rookie contract on Thursday. The pact is for four years with a total value of $3.395 million and a signing bonus of a little under $100,000.
Willekes had an outstanding career at Michigan State, being named All-First Team B1G the past two seasons, in addition to being named the B1G Defensive Lineman of the Year in 2018. He was also the winner of the Burlsworth Trophy this past year, which is the award given to the best FBS player that began his college career as a walk-on.
With the loss of Everson Griffen and the promotion of Ifeadi Odenigbo to the starting spot at defensive end opposite Danielle Hunter, Willekes will have an opportunity to make the squad as a backup and potentially part of the defensive line rotation. If he can bring the production he had with the Spartans to Minnesota, he could be making those contributions sooner rather than later.
With the signing of Willekes, the last draft pick the Vikings have to sign is first-round cornerback Jeff Gladney. I have a feeling you’ll be seeing that news here shortly. Like, within the next ten minutes.