Now, E.J. has been one of my favorite Vikings to watch for a number of years now (and I would love to still wear his jersey on game day without feeling silly), but even I wouldn’t have predicted that the elder Henderson somehow worked into the Vikings offseason plan of getting younger, healthier, and less expensive.
Jasper Brinkley might not fit the Tampa-2 scheme real great, as some media outlets have been quick to opine, but the right rotation of Brinkley, Erin Henderson and Chad Greenway could make them a very effective group.
Hartman writes that Henderson is not wavering from his demand to be paid the same as last season for his services, which would bring his salary in at $6.7 million.
That isn’t going to happen. If it was, it already would have.
Henderson is on the wrong side of thirty, has had trouble staying on the field in consecutive seasons, and is a major liability in pass coverage. If the Vikings planned to give that type of money to a veteran linebacker this offseason, that too would have already happened.
In fact, looking back at how the offseason has played, one of my only real complaints is that the Vikings didn’t pony up for a stud linebacker when they had the chance. Stephen Tulloch (signed with Lions), Curtis Lofton (Saints), Dan Connor (Cowboys), and David Hawthorne (Seahawks) all could have been sure-fire upgrades at the linebacker position.
I like Brinkley’s potential, but the linebacker position is one to keep an eye on as the offseason progresses.