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Mailbag: ‘Other than offensive line,’ what positions will Vikings address?

INDIANAPOLIS – Good day from the NFL scouting merge in Indianapolis, where by the offseason starts in earnest. 

From @ASinnen: We all naturally know how poor O-line assist is desired (@RandBall), but where by else do you see the Vikings concentrating on to upgrade through draft or free company?

AK: Prior to the Vikings’ very own departures are settled, I’d say backup functioning back, defensive tackle, linebacker and receiver would near the prime of my checklist. Given Cook’s early personal injury heritage, his backup may possibly come to be a precedence. Right after the period, Latavius Murray explained he desires to get started someplace in 2019, but the free agent will have to go somewhere else to do so. Mike Boone and Roc Thomas flashed some as rookies, but new expertise could be coming. Vikings brass will meet with reps of linebacker Anthony Barr and defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson this 7 days in Indianapolis. Even if they re-signal Barr or Richardson (or in some way both of those?), depth could still be dealt with. Modifications could also be made at kicker, punter and punt returner with Dan Bailey, Matt Wile and Marcus Sherels on expiring contracts and a new coordinator in Marwan Maalouf.  They could use an upgrade at the No. 3 receiver place even if Aldrick Robinson is re-signed. The Vikings also have a decision to make on defensive conclude Everson Griffen, which we’ll outline later, but if Griffen is lower then defensive conclude also will become an location to incorporate depth.

From @SkolMitzel: Who’s tougher to swap, Barr or Richardson?

AK: In my opinion, I’d say Anthony Barr would be tougher to swap due to the fact of his roles in Mike Zimmer’s blitz strategies. Coaches often credit rating Barr for drawing significantly of the focus that can give his teammates far better matchups. He also holds up in unheralded careers these types of as communicating the defensive play phone calls. The Vikings had the NFL’s No. 1 defense in advance of Sheldon Richardson’s arrival. The defense certainly advantages from his disruptive presence. But specifically in a calendar year where by as many as seven defensive tackles are projected to be taken in the very first round, a one of a kind linebacker in Barr could be tougher to swap.

From @crewbacker: How significantly self-confidence does the employees have in Jaleel Johnson and Jalyn Holmes at DT if Richardson is absent?

AK: The Vikings would will need to incorporate a setting up-caliber player if Richardson remaining. Johnson performed nicely in spurts during his next NFL period and showed assure, but it is unlikely they’d rely on so significantly youth on your own. Holmes, final year’s fourth-round choose, just demands to get on the industry additional this period. Mike Zimmer has required a deeper defensive line rotation, sending in as many as eight diverse players during the Week 1 gain from San Francisco, but injuries and other components hold derailing their strategies. So hope a fairly massive addition if Richardson exits.

From @dobsy1971: When will we hear about restructuring of contracts or releases?

AK: At any level – and specifically this 7 days during the NFL’s yearly conference in Indianapolis – information could leak about a restructure or release, but the Vikings are generally additional methodical than not this time of calendar year. What is important to know are the key dates that will spurn action. A person is March 11, when the negotiating window opens for free brokers to talk with other teams and get contracts in put. This is when the serious presents arrive and a staff, like the cap-strapped Vikings, will will need to have made value-chopping moves to very clear place. Another is March 13, the get started of free company and when Trae Waynes’ $9.069 million will become absolutely guaranteed. A massive a person is March 15, two days into free company and when Everson Griffen’s $10.9 million wage will become absolutely guaranteed. By then the Vikings will have to determine his potential with the staff. Xavier Rhodes’ $10.4 million, Linval Joseph’s $8.9 million and Stefon Diggs’ $8.9 million also come to be absolutely guaranteed on March 15.

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