The Off-season Moves…
The Vikings resigned a handful of players and brought in some much needed help via Free Agency. These players are guard Alex Boone from the San Francisco 49ers, tackle Andre Smith of the Cincinnati Bengals, and safety Michael Griffin from the Tennessee Titans. This addresses two areas that the Vikings needed, they got a former Pro Bowl offensive lineman in Boone who might not be playing at that level anymore, but if he’s anything like it that will be a major improvement and Smith has been an above average tackle for the Bengals who should improve the offensive line as he has played well when he’s healthy. The Vikings were also able to add secondary depth as Griffin might compete with safety Andrew Sendejo for the right to play alongside Harrison Smith.
The Vikings also cut wide receiver Mike Wallace this off-season which cleared up $10M in Cap space. I really liked this move. I also think this will open the window for the Vikings to go after a stud WR in this years draft.
News: The Minnesota Vikings have signed Leonhardt.
Impact: The contract was completed Monday, bringing the native of Spring Lake Park, Minnesota, back to his home state. The 6-foot-5, 255-pound Leonhardt went undrafted out of Bemidji State and spent time with Oakland and Cleveland over his first two years in the NFL. He played last season for San Francisco, where his position coach was Tony Sparano, now offensive line coach of the Vikings.
News: Smith has agreed to terms on a one-year deal with the Minnesota Vikings.
Impact: Smith and the Vikings came to agreement on Thursday, a few days after he visited the Twin Cities. He also visited the Arizona Cardinals. Smith was the sixth overall draft pick by the Cincinnati Bengals in 2009. He was the starter at right tackle for the last five seasons and is expected to compete with Phil Loadholt for that job in Minnesota. Loadholt is returning from a torn Achilles.
News: The Vikings have re-signed Ellison and cornerback Marcus Sherels. The deals were done Tuesday.
Impact: Ellison is coming off surgery to repair a torn patellar tendon in his right knee, an injury that kept him out of Minnesota’s playoff game. The fourth-round draft pick in 2012, who has become a key run blocker and a reliable receiver on the limited opportunities he’s had to catch the ball, is not quite halfway through the six-month recovery. Ellison, who also lines up as a fullback at times, has 458 yards and three touchdowns receiving over four years.