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Potential Free Agent Signings for the Minnesota Vikings

We are only days away from the 2nd best part of the offseason …. Free Agency. Come Thursday we’ll see guys switching teams at a rapid pace, and if the hype is true we should see the Vikings as one of the more active teams. Below are a few tiers of players that I feel the Vikings could be interested in, sticking to some of the more prominent needs when it comes to position with offensive line, defensive line and running back.

Also check out the Vikings current Free Agents and our thoughts if they will be back or not

The “Potential Holy Sh!t” Possibilities

These are the homerun type signings that will get every Viking fan talking about a Super Bowl run in 2017. The guys that everyone talk about prior to free agency and your team actually lands them …. aka Steve Hutchinson… Antoine Winfield.

wagRicky Wagner OT, Ravens

Would instantly fill the right tackle spot and be a HUGE upgrade. Wagner at the ripe age of 27 years old has slowly become one of the best right tackles in the entire league. He still has a good 3-4 years left in the tank and would be welcomed with open arms. I actually see the Vikings as a one of the top contenders for his service come Thursday, so while this is a big boy signing it is absolutely possible.

Kevin Zeitler G, Bengals

Zeitler is the best guard available in free agency, hands down. Like Wagner this would be a game changing signing for the offensive line. Zeitler is still young at the age of 26, and still has plenty left in the tank. Zimmer has familiarity with the former Wisconsin Badger which could give him a leg up … they just need to be willing to pony up on the high price that he will command.

Tony Jefferson S, Cardinals

Let me be clear from the start, the chances of the Vikings tossing a ton of money at the safety position when they have greater needs is slim to none. But remember, this is a “Holy Sh!t” type of signing we are talking about. Jefferson is one of the better safeties in the league and pairing him up with the Hitman would be magical. At only 25 years of age the Cards simply can’t afford to bring him back and where ever he lands, he will have a huge impact on their secondary.

The “Still Sexy But More Realistic” Possibilities

Here we have the signings that don’t get as much love but usually end up being the better signings. These guys fly mildly under the radar but are still considered better than average, they just don’t get the buzz to go along with it….. aka Chester Taylor.

murrayLatavius Murray RB, Raiders

Murray to the Vikings picked up steam immediately after it was announced AP would be hitting the free agent market. Murray has been a good not great running back during his time in the league. He has managed to put up some good numbers, but has also been behind a very good offensive line. His main attraction to the Vikings is his great ability to pass block … but what he is going to command in $$$, I just don’t see it being worth it, especially with the talent at RB in the upcoming draft.

Riley Reiff OT, Lions

Former 1st round pick Reiff has the ability to play either left OR right tackle which makes him extra appealing. Minnesota has gotten to know the big man quite a bit during his time in the league, and like Kalil he has had his ups and downs. He has enough talent to get himself a good chunk of change this free agency and I see him as a real possibility if the Vikings miss out on any targeted top guys (Wagner, Okung)

Larry Warford G, Lions

I gotta be honest, it is a toss-up on who I would rather have when it comes to Zeitler or Warford. Warford is only 25 years old and has a total of 57 starts under his belt during his time in the NFL. I would consider him an above average guard who has really yet to meet his potential, while it is a bold statement, I think the Warford signing could make as big of an impact as the Steve Hutchinson signing from years past.

The Just …. “Sure OK ” … Possibilities

These are the guys that don’t really get you excited, but deep down you know they have a shot to contribute and help the team. I compare this group to the mid-rounds of the draft, this is where you can find the hidden gems, aka, Tom Johnson.

fairleyNick Fairley DT, New Orleans Saints

I have loved Fairley ever since his days at Auburn, while he hasn’t lived up to his hype coming out he has proven to be a late bloomer. He notched 6.5 sacks last year in part-time duty and might have finally reached his stride. Pairing him up with Linval Joseph and (if healthy) Sharrif Floyd, Minnesota would have a pretty damn solid group of interior lineman. I would LOVE to see what Zimmer could do with this guy.

Austin Pasztor, OT, Browns

Pasztor is a 26 year old right tackle who has started 43 games over his career. While I think a guy like Pasztor would be an instant starter with the group the Vikings currently have, I wouldn’t consider him a game changer. I see him more of a stop-gap until the Vikings groom the rookies they draft in the coming years.

Andre Ellington RB, Cardinals

Ellington showed promise early in his career but after some injuries ended up buried on the depth chart behind David Johnson and Chris Johnson. Ellington is a homerun type runner who can take it to the house on any touch. He can be an explosive player at times makes plays in the run and pass game. But don’t let me sugar coat it too much, he is a low-risk/high-reward type of guy out to prove that he can be a number 1 back in the NFL.

The “Head scratching What The” Possibilities

These are the signings that either make you physically ill …. or just boggle your damn mind. The signings that don’t get you excited and are usually casualties come final cuts … the crap shoot signings, aka, Taylor Mays.

ljLuke Joeckel, G/OT, Jaguars or Chance Warmack, Titans

Here are a few guys that are former top picks in the draft who will be looking for new homes. Both haven’t even come close to living up to their hype, but still have the intrigue and potential to turn their careers around. I honestly love signings like this, you get a young guy who is hungry to prove people wrong, worst case they get beat out by a better player and don’t cost you an arm and a leg.

Christine Michael RB, Packers

Vikings tried to put a claim on him when he was available but were sniped by the Packers. So we know the interest is there, and we absolutely know the Vikings will be looking for depth at the running back position. But Michael is just a guy who has never lived up to his potential, he would be on a prove-it deal and would be pushing just to make the roster.

Geno Smith QB, Jets

Truth is the Vikings need more bodies at quarterback. Teddy won’t see the field in ’17 and Shaun Hill is a free agent that nobody expects back. Smith fits the mold, he is a younger guy coming off his 1st contract who could add depth on the cheap. Minnesota wouldn’t be a horrible spot for Smith to land, get him out of the lime light and allow him to just concentrate on being a back-up in the NFL.

 

 

 

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2016 NFL Draft Grade A Day | New England Patriots


With the NFL season over it’s time to look at each team’s draft class and grade them on a PRODUCTION ONLY  basis.  Let’s see what teams had first year success and which ones are hoping for better in year two.

POINTS SCALE

Round 1: 0-5
Round 2: 0-4
Round 3: 0-3
Round 4: 0-2
Round 5: 0-1
Round 6 – Undrafted:  Points only awarded if player was productive, no scale.

Bonus points are awarded to any player who out-performed their draft slot.

Round 2 – Cyrus Jones CB/S, Alabama

Analysis – Jones was the Pats first pick and the most disappointing one.  He did little on defense and didn’t do much more as a return man.
Score – 2/4

Round 3 – Joe Thuney G, NC State

Analysis – Thuney was a huge steal who ended up starting all 16 regular season games.
Score – 4.5/3

Round 3 – Jacoby Brissett QB, NC State

Analysis – Brissett was forced into starting when Garropolo went down during Brady’s suspension.  He did okay and can at least be looked at as a future backup.
Score – 2.25/3

Round 3 – Vincent Valentine DT, Nebraska

Analysis – Valentine started a couple games and had 19 tackles and a sack.
Score – 2/3

Round 4 – Malcolm Mitchell WR, Georgia

Analysis – Mitchell flashed 3/4 through the season and became a steady target for Brady in that time frame.  The team should be excited for his future.
Score – 2/2

Round 6 – Kamu Grugier Hill OLB, Illinois

Analysis – KGH had 8 tackles for the EAGLES.
Score – 0/0

Round 6 – Elandon Roberts LB, Houston

Analysis – Roberts was a hell of a find in round 6.  He had 45 tackles in 5 starts.
Score – 1/0

Round 6 – Ted Karras G, Illinois

Analysis – Karras was active for every game and got to start one.
Score – 0.25/0

Round 7 – Devin Lucien WR, ASU

Analysis – The bad news is Lucien didn’t see the field as a rookie.  The good news is he’s still on the roster.
Score – 0/0

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS 2016 NFL DRAFT GRADE

FINAL SCORE & GRADE   14/15 | 93% | A

Analysis: 

The Patriots traded out of the first round like they’ve done so many times before, and still had themselves a very productive draft class in year one.  Their first pick CB Cyrus Jones was a pretty big disappointment.  He didn’t play much on defense and when he did he wasn’t all that effective.  He also wasn’t lights out as a returner, looking just average.  He will need to step up his game in year two.  Things got much better for the Patriots after the Jones pick.  Joe Thuney was an excellent choice, who went on to start every game at guard.  He played well and looks to be a decade long starter for the Patriots.  Their other two third rounders QB Jacoby Brissett, and DT Vincent Valentine also produced, with Brissett even starting a couple games at QB when the Patriots needed him to.  4th round WR Malcolm Mitchell proved to be a great value and was a rare rookie who clicked with Tom Brady in year one.  The Patriots also found value late in the Draft with LB Elandon Roberts and guard Ted Karras.  Both of those guys played  a lot more than their draft slot would indicate and look to be at worst valuable depth options for the team.  Overall this grade should hold steady, and could even go up in time if Cyrus Jones can develop into a productive player.

 

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2016 NFL Draft Grade A Day Seattle Seahawks

With the NFL season over it’s time to look at each team’s draft class and grade them on a PRODUCTION ONLY  basis.  Let’s see what teams had first year success and which ones are hoping for better in year two.

POINTS SCALE

Round 1: 0-5
Round 2: 0-4
Round 3: 0-3
Round 4: 0-2
Round 5: 0-1
Round 6 – Undrafted:  Points only awarded if player was productive, no scale.

Bonus points are awarded to any player who out-performed their draft slot.

Round 1 – Germain Ifedi OT, Texas A&M

Analysis – Ifedi started 13 games for a Seahawks line that desperately needed his help.
Score – 5/5

Round 2 – Jarran Reed DT, Alabama

Analysis – Reed didn’t blow anyone away but he was solid in his rookie season.  He had 34 tackles and 1.5 sacks in 6 starts.
Score – 3.75/4

Round 3 – CJ Prosise RB, Notre Dame

Analysis – It took Prosise awhile to get healthy and on the field and when he did he flashed tremendous ability. Then he got hurt again.
Score – 1.5/3

Round 3 – Nick Vannett TE, Ohio St.

Analysis – Vannet started a couple games but had just 3 catches on the season.
Score – 1/3

Round 3 – Rees Odhiambo G, Boise St.

Analysis – Rees was active for 9 games.
Score – 0.5/3

Round 5 – Quinton Jefferson DT, Maryland

Analysis – Jefferson had one tackle, but it’s one he can build off of for the future.
Score – 0/1

Round 5 – Alex Collins RB, Arkansas

Analysis – Collins was one of my man crushes a season ago and he didn’t quite live up to my lofty expectations.  Still he played in 11 games and ran for a buck twenty five and scored a TD.
Score – .75/1

Round 6 – Joey Hunt C, TCU

Analysis – Hunt was active for 9 games and even got to start one.
Score – 0.25/0

Round 7 – Kenny Lawler WR, CAL

Analysis – Lawler never got on the field, which was downright unlawful.
Score – 0/0

Round 7 – Zac Brooks RB, Clemson

Analysis – Brooks didn’t want to be here anymore so he went to Denver.
Score – 0/0

Undrafted -Trevone Boykin QB, TCU

Analysis – Boykin earned the backup job and actually fared quite well when pressed into duty.
Score – .5/0

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 2016 NFL DRAFT GRADE

FINAL SCORE & GRADE   13.25/20 | 66% | D

Analysis: 

The Seahawks 2016 NFL Draft goes down as a D for production in year one but I don’t think that’s where this grade will ultimately end up.  Their first two picks panned out well as Ifedi and Reed both look like long term starters for the Seabirds.  Ifedi held his own while starting 13 games and Reed flashed as an interior force on the defensive line.  The biggest reason this grade is so low is the team had three third round choices and didn’t get much out of any of them.  CJ Prosise has the potential to be a star in this league, but it remains to be seen if he can stay healthy, as he sure as hell couldn’t his rookie season.  The Seahawks found some late value with RB Alex Collins, QB Trevone Boykin and C Joey Hunt, but also missed on WR Kenny Lawler and RB Zac Brooks.  There is a lot in this class for the Seahawks front office to get excited about and it wouldn’t be surprising to see this grade jump quite a bit in year two.

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2016 NFL Draft Grade A Day | Carolina Panthers

With the NFL season over it’s time to look at each team’s draft class and grade them on a PRODUCTION ONLY  basis.  Let’s see what teams had first year success and which ones are hoping for better in year two.

POINTS SCALE

Round 1: 0-5
Round 2: 0-4
Round 3: 0-3
Round 4: 0-2
Round 5: 0-1
Round 6 – Undrafted:  Points only awarded if player was productive, no scale.

Bonus points are awarded to any player who out-performed their draft slot.

Round 1 – Vernon Butler DT, LA Tech

Analysis – Not sure what the Panthers were hoping for from Butler but guessing it had to be more that 13 tackles and 1.5 sacks.
Score – 2.5/5

Round 3 – James Bradberry CB, Stanford

Analysis – Bradberry was sweet his rookie sesason.  He started 13 games and had 59 tackles and 2 interceptions.
Score – 4/3

Round 3 – Daryl Worley CB, West Virginia

Analysis – Worley was just plain awesome in year one.  He had 88 tackles a sack, and an interception as a rookie.
Score – 4.5/3

Round 5 – Zack Sanchez CB, Oklahoma

Analysis – Sanchez started one game and had 9 tackles.  He gets one dirty 1/4 point for that.
Score – 0.25/1

Round 7 – Beau Sandland  TE, Montana St.

Analysis – Sandland was more like the sandman in his rookie season as he would’ve matched his production by sleeping.  He now belongs to the Packers.
Score – 0/0

CAROLINA PANTHERS 2016 NFL DRAFT GRADE

FINAL SCORE & GRADE   11.25/12 | 94% | A 

Analysis: This is a pretty interesting class for the Panthers as far as year one production is concerned.  They earned an A grade but really didn’t get much out of their first round choice.  That doesn’t happen often.  They were saved by two excellent third round choices.  James Bradberry and Daryl Worley both became starting corners and played at a very high level.  While they may not have always shut down opposing wide receivers consistently, they racked up the tackles and made some big time plays.  They will both benefit a ton from all the experience gained this season, and should be even better in year two and beyond.  So the duration of this “A” grade will wager heavily on first round choice Vernon Butler. If he can become a starter or constant contributor it should hold steady.  If he becomes a disappointment, it may dip in the upcoming years.

But as we know anything is possible … and worth betting on, for more information check out NFL American football at William Hill.

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2017 Free Agent Mock Draft

Imagine NFL Free Agency and the NFL Draft come together …… where each teams gets dibs on any free agent player of their choice based off the current NFL Draft order. Below is the dream scenario of not having to worry about cap space and simply picking the best player on the free agency board that will help improve your favorite team. As always there were some reaches and steals throughout round 1.

1. Cleveland Browns (Lupagus) – Alshon Jeffrey WR, Chicago Bears

The Browns simply need more weapons on offense. They have some nice young talent in Corey Coleman and Terrelle Pryor but Jeffrey is a proven true no. 1 receiver and will make whoever is the Browns QB next season, that much better.

2. San Francisco 49ers (Onebar) – A.J. Bouye CB, Houston Texans

Not the biggest need but San Fran wouldn’t hesitate to grab one of the best defenders available in FA. Bouye isn’t a household name as of yet …. But would give the 9ers the depth they need in the secondary.

3. Chicago Bears (Lupagus) – Calais Campbell DE, Arizona Cardinals

The Bears are a team that is slowly getting better. Adding a beast like Campbell to their defense could put their defense back on track as soon as this season.

4. Jacksonville Jaguars (Onebar) – Kevin Zeitler G, Bengals

Zeets would be the best case scenario. The Jags took a huge step backwards in 2016 and it all starts up front getting Bortles time and opening holes for whichever back they toss back there.

5. LA Rams (Lupagus) – D’onta Hightwoer LB, New England Patriots

The Rams have a lot of issues and linebacker is certainly near the top. Hightower does struggle to stay healthy, but is a beast when he’s on the field.

6. New York Jets (Onebar) – Stephon Gilmore CB, Buffalo Bills

With the recent release of Revis cornerback is needed more than ever in New York. Gilmore is still young has plenty of gas left in the tank as a top corner.

7. San Diego Chargers (Lupagus) – John Cyprien S, Jacksonville Jaguars

Safety is high on the Chargers wish list this offseason. Where they sit in the Draft may cause them to lose out on the top 2 in the Draft, so they may look to free agency to solidify this position.

8. Carolina Panthers (Onebar) – Ricky Wagner OT, Baltimore Ravens

Seems like the Panthers have needed help on the o-line since …. Forever. Wagner has proved to be one of the best in the league and would be a gift to a messy o-line.

9. Cincinnati Bengals (Lupagus) – Tony Jefferson S, Arizona Cardinals

The Bengals could use some help at the safety position. Jefferson is an underrated talent who could make an impact immediately.

10. Buffalo Bills (Onebar) – DeSean Jackson WR, Washington Redskins

Jackson topped the 1,000 yard mark in 2016 and still gets 17.9 yards a catch. With most of their receiving depth set to hit FA, receiver will be a big ole need.

11. New Orleans Saints (Lupagus) – Dre Kirkpatrick CB, Cincinnati Bengals

The Saints pass defense is looser than an old whore’s cooch. Dre finally lived up to his first round billing a season ago and can help tighten things up.

12. Philadelphia Eagles (Onebar) – Terrelle Pryor WR, Cleveland Browns

The Eagles receiving depth chart is full of guys that forgot to live up to their potential. Why not toss a guy into the mix that has gone above and beyond expectations.

13. Arizona Cardinals (Lupagus) – TJ Lang G, Green Bay Packers

The Cardinals current starter at right guard is Evan Mathis. He’s pushing 40. Lang is a little younger and much better.

14. Minnesota Vikings (Onebar) – Larry Warford G, Lions

Vikings instantly improve a very subpar unit along the offensive line with the big man Warford. Would allow them to look at the best OT’s early and often come draft day.

15. Indianapolis Colts (Lupagus) – Nick Perry OLB, Green Bay Packers

The Colts are going to be stripped buck naked when it comes to OLB and free agency. They would be wise to re-stock the cupboards starting with Perry who is starting to finally play to the level of his potential.

16. Baltimore Ravens (Onebar) – Dontari Poe DT, Kansas City Chiefs

Ravens don’t hesitate to add the big man in the middle, i’m mildly surprised the Chiefs didn’t tag Poe.

17. Washington Redskins (Lupagus) – Brandon Williams NT, Baltimore Ravens

The Skins could be in the market for a big ol’ run stuffing hog. That is exactly what B-Dubbs is.

18. Tennessee Titans (Onebar) – Martellus Bennett TE, New England Patriots

Not a huge need, but I love the thought of giving Mariota as many offensive weapons as humanly possible.

19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Lupagus) – Latavius Murray RB, Oakland Raiders

The Bucs options at runnung back got real gross a season ago and it would make sense for them to bring in a solid veteran like Murray to handle most of the load.

20. Denver Broncos (Onebar) – Riley Reiff OT, Detroit Lions

Reiff can play either right or left tackle and could come in as a younger option to the departed Okung.

21. Detroit Lions (Lupagus) – Jabaal Sheard DE, New England Patriots

The Lions could use another pass rusher. Sheard is an under appreciated player who could help the defense significantly and won’t break the bank.

22. Miami Dolphins (Onebar) – Ronald Leary G, Dallas

Dolphins need help up front and Leary is fairly underrated heading into FA, could end up being a steal.

23. New York Giants (Lupagus) – Adrian Peterson RB, Minnesota Vikings

This seems more than likely to happen at this point. Peterson has expressed interest in the Giants and they could use a talented veteran back.

24. Oakland Raiders (Onebar) – Jamaal Charles RB, Kansas City Chiefs

The Raiders swing for the fences and hope Charles can come back as his old self. Tossing a guy like Charles in an already potent offense would be damn fun to watch.

25. Houston Texans (Lupagus) – Jonathan Hankins DT, New York Giants

Vince Wilfork is likely done, and while young DJ Reader showed promise, it would be wise for the Texans to bring in a solid vet like Hankins to split reps with him.

26. Seattle Seahawks (Onebar) – Nick Fairley DT, New Orleans Saints

Seattle always seems to need help in the middle of their defense. Fairley could push for a starting spot day 1 and start to clog up the middle.

27. Kansas City Chiefs (Lupagus) – JC Tretter OL, Green Bay Packers

The Chiefs don’t have many glaring needs so they grab a guy who can back up all positions on the offensive line.

28. Dallas Cowboys (Onebar) – Chris Long DE, New England Patriots

The Cowboys make a huge reach for the old timer, but with their depleted defensive line they are banking on Long having a little something left in the tank.

29. Pittsburgh Steelers (Lupagus) – Jared Cook TE, Green Bay Packers

Apparently I only draft Packers. Anyway, Cook in my opinion, is better than any TE the Steelers have on the roster, and could benefit from Roethlisberger who could look his way often.

30. Green Bay Packers (Onebar) – Eddie Lacy RB, Green Bay Packers

Packers bring back one of their own, Lacy will continue to man their backfield and help the Packers continue to fall short come playoff time.

31. Atlanta Falcons (Lupagus) – Logan Ryan CB, New England Patriots

The Falcons, through their tears, noticed that Ryan was a solid player during their Super Bowl collapse. So they snatch him up.

32. New England Patriots (Onebar) – D.J. Swearinger S, Arizona Cardinals

Patriots don’t think twice about bolstering their secondary. At only 25 years old he adds some needed youth to a crusty safety crew.

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