Antoine Winfield is not retiring after all.
At least not yet.
Winfield’s agent, Ashanti Webb, said the 36-year-old free agent cornerback has yet to file retirement papers. On the same note, Webb said he hasn’t “heard anything substantive from (Vikings) to bring back to Antoine.”
Before the season opener, shortly after reports came out that Seattle would release the veteran corner, Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier said that he would “welcome” a chance to reunite with the Winfield.
“You know, I have a ton of respect for Antoine,” Frazier said. “He did a lot of good things for us here, had a great career here in Minnesota and really helped me look good at times with some of the plays he made. I have a deep affection for him.
“But if he wanted to play, I’d welcome the opportunity to work with Antoine again if that’s what he wanted to do. But if he’s retired, I wish him nothing but the best. He’s been a great player, a great person, and he’s going to enjoy retirement. But he was a tremendous player for a long time in our league.”
Minnesota’s defense struggled against Detroit on Sunday. While some of the blame should be attributed to the game planning against the Lion’s potent passing attack, the team’s secondary allowed many unnecessary plays for long yards.
One would assume the Vikings would welcome Winfield back, but apparently little conversation has happened between Winfield and Minnesota since his release from the Seahawks. Familiarity with the Vikings’ defense would make it appealing for both sides, but many other teams in the NFL employ some form of the tampa-2 scheme that Winfield could smoothly transition to.