Saturday, August 1, 2015

Monthly Archives: March 2012

The Vikings somehow managed to beat out the 49ers in wooing a free agent.  That probably had something to do with the potential for upward mobility (i.e. the lack of talent) and the presence of former Panthers offensive line coach Jeff Davidson.

Geoff Schwartz has reportedly agreed to a one year deal with the Vikings after visiting with them on Monday.

Schwartz is the third free agent to join this roster that didn’t play a single NFL snap in 2011, in this case due to an injury that sidelined him.

In 2010, however, he appeared like an up-and-coming offensive lineman for the Panthers.  He was near-dominant at right guard and serviceable at right tackle.  He will immediately jump into the mix, competing to replace Anthony Herrera in the starting lineup, and possibly even pushing Phil Loadholt for his job.

While numbers are not yet available, the length of the deal is somewhat surprising to me.  At age 25, Schwartz could possibly be a steal for teams looking for a long-term rebuild (anybody know one?) so I would’ve expected the Vikings to try and increase the length of the deal.

The decision to re-sign defensive tackles Letroy Guion and Fred Evans will make more sense to those that thought the moves made no sense at all (of which I was not one).

In light of the punishments being handed down by the NFL to those involved with the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal, the Vikings are expected to be in the process of releasing nose tackle Remi Ayodele.

No players, including Ayodele, have been punished individually yet, but the NFL is expected to do so relatively soon.

Just last week it appeared like the Vikings had every intention to keep Ayodele around when they paid a deferred portion of his $3.6 million signing bonus.  It is not known if the actions taken by Ayodele in the past could result in the Vikings recovering any of the money they spent on what essentially turned out to be a horrible post-lockout free agent signing.

On the plus side, this move could be the first one the Vikings have made this offseason that won’t be met with criticism from the masses.

UPDATE:  The Vikings have made the move official.

Today, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell made a huge statement when he brought the hammer down on the New Orleans Saints for their bounty program. And while this isn’t exactly Vikings news, we felt that the punishment should be mentioned here since we’ve touched on the subject off and on since it came into the news.

No, the Vikings don’t get any compensatory picks. We don’t get a re-do of the NFC Championship game. The Saints didn’t lose their Superbowl ring. The Vikings will be compensated in no way, shape or form (for all you hoping they would be). But they did receive a punishment far more extreme than anything the likes of the NFL has ever seen. Seriously – it’s crazy.

The punishment (according to ESPN):

  1. Defensive Coordinator Gregg Williams suspended indefinitely from the NFL.
  2. Head coach Sean Payton suspended (without pay) for one year. Roger Goodell will meet with Payton after the 2012 season to determine the coach’s status.
  3. General Manager Mickey Loomis suspended for 8 games (without pay).
  4. Loss of the Saints second round pick in both 2012 and 2013.
  5. A fine of $500,000.
  6. Assistant Coach Joe Vitt suspended 6 games (without pay) and fined $100,000.
  7. The players and coaches involved will be required to participate in efforts by the NFL to educate others on the importance of the respect for the game and those who participate in it. Their safety, sportsman-like conduct, etc…

In regards to the punishment, Goodell said,

“We are all accountable and responsible for player health and safety and the integrity of the game… We will not tolerate conduct or a culture that undermines those priorities. No one is above the game or the rules that govern it. Respect for the game and the people who participate in it will not be compromised… A combination of elements made this matter particularly unusual and egregious… When there is targeting of players for injury and cash rewards over a three-year period, the involvement of the coaching staff, and three years of denials and willful disrespect of the rules, a strong and lasting message must be sent that such conduct is totally unacceptable and has no place in the game.”

It is expected that there will also be punishments for the 22 of 27 players involved eventually.

One thing to keep an eye out for is if this has any effect on what the Vikings do with Remi Ayodele. It seems he’s already been displaced by some of the free-agency moves made so far this off-season. If he is one of the 22 players that will eventually (assumingly) be punished by the NFL, it may be wise for the Vikings to just cut their ties now.

Oh yeah, and since we’re already talking about things that aren’t really Vikings news… Tim Tebow is a Jet. Don’t you just love football?

The battle for backup running back and starting fullback may not be the most exciting one when training camp rolls around, but the Vikings are making sure there will be plenty of competition.

A couple of days after signing Lex Hilliard to a one year contract, the Vikings have now announced the addition of fullback Jerome Felton. 

A 2008 fifth round selection by the Lions, Felton figures to compete for a roster spot at age 25.  He had spent three seasons with the Lions, playing in 42 games before being waived in 2011.  He was claimed by the Panthers and then later in the season joined the Colts.

Felton joins a running back squad that consists of the following:  Adrian Peterson, Toby Gerhart, Lex Hilliard, Matt Asiata, and Ryan D’Imperio.  It might be safe to assume that no bruising backs are targeted on Draft weekend, and that we should instead keep our eye on any quick, speedy scat backs in the later rounds.

Terms of Felton’s deal are not yet known.

The Vikings also officially announced the re-signing of Letroy Guion on Tuesday, a move that we knew was coming for a week.

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Fullback Jerome Felton isn’t the only free agent expected to meet with the Vikings today.

According to Vikings Now, the Vikings are hosting wide receiver and return specialist Ted Ginn Jr.

Ginn has had struggles with hanging onto passes throughout his career, but he has earned plenty of recognition as a dangerous return man.  Ginn was selected ninth overall by the Dolphins in 2007 and will be 27 years old.

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