Saturday, March 28, 2015
Blog Page 128

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[NOTE FROM ADAM:  I’m all about encouraging new, young writers to take that leap of faith and put their work out there for everyone to see.  It can be an intimidating step to talk, as the internet isn’t always the nicest of places, but there is no better way to gain experience and to improve as a writer than to just do it.  Please join me in welcoming the newest Vikings voice:  Chris Serri.  Chris recently started a Twitter account for Vikings fans to interact with (@MN_VikingsFans) and we got to talking about him potentially contributing to VT.  Enjoy his first post!]

By Chris Serri

Earlier this morning, the public was informed that Jared Allen,  the former fan-favorite defensive end for the Minnesota Vikings, was signed by the Chicaco Bears to a four-year deal, per the team’s official Twitter account. Prior to signing with the Bears, he had also visited with the Seahawks and the Cowboys. The overwhelming majority of Vikings fans, myself included, will dearly miss Jared Allen, as he was one of the faces of our franchise, and definitely was the personality of the team. Moreover, the fact that he is staying in the NFC North and playing for a rival of the Vikings will obviously sting. Two or three years ago, most fans could never have pictured Jared Allen going on to play for another team.

The question remains, however, whether or not we as fans should show anger or  resentment towards Allen. This situation is somewhat similar to the Greg Jennings’ departure from the Packers a year ago. Jennings wanted more money than the Packers were willing to offer, so he signed with the Vikings, the only other team to show significant interest in him. The situation is not completely similar though, as it was already widely assumed by most fans that he would be gone this season. The fact of the matter is that Jared Allen was not getting younger, and because of this, he wanted to move on and finish his carrer playing for a “contender.” Whether or not the Bears are truly contenders is debatable, however, it is important to realize that the Vikings have a young talented pass rusher in Everson Griffen with tremendous athletic ability, and resigning him made the decision to part ways with Allen much easier. Had we not been able to resign Griffen, we may have made a greater push to retain Allen.

At the end of the day, it was simply time for both sides to move on. The Vikings went into the offseason wanting to get younger, and there was simply no reason to pay a hefty ammount of change to Allen while his talented backup is here waiting to get his chance to  dominate. We had seen what Griffen is capable of throughout the past few years in limited action, and the Vikings knew that now, with Allen’s contract expiring, is as perfect a time as any for Griffen to step into a full-time role. There is no reason for fans to be angry with Allen. He gave our beloved Vikings several great years, especially in 2011, when he had 22 sacks. He did not end his Vikings career on bad terms with the team, as he simply wants to win a Super Bowl. Instead of being angry that he will be behind enemy lines, Vikings fans should rejoice and be glad that he gave us six tremendous years. He may not be with our team any longer, but Vikings fans will always have a place for Jared Allen in their hearts.

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Someone named Jared Allen signed with the Chicago Bears today to a four-year deal, worth $32,000,000. The structure of the deal is of course important with a player at Allen’s age (31), and it can be voided to a three-year, $24,000,000 deal. $15,500,000 is fully guaranteed—which comes from a base salary guaranteed fully in the first two years and a roster bonus he will receive next March.

On a per-year basis, this is a lower deal than the one he “missed out on” with the Denver Broncos when they offered him and DeMarcus Ware identical, $30,000,000 deals over three years, but it is similar amount of guaranteed money.

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Per Fox Sports North (via ESPN), Brian Hall reports that Mike Zimmer has decided to connect with Fran Tarkenton to discuss Johnny Manziel, one of the most polarizing quarterbacks of the NFL draft, and a serious candidate for the Vikings in the NFL draft.

Tarkenton has been saying for a couple of months now that he’s a fan of Manziel and that Manziel reminds Tark of himself. He reiterated those statements when asked by USA Today a month ago:

“Nobody really played like I played,” Tarkenton told USA Today earlier this month. “This kid plays like I did more than anybody else. He’s the closest thing I’ve seen to myself. Russell Wilson has some of it. But Manziel has those similarities even more so than Russell.

“Manziel is a quarterback savant.”

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The NFLPA announced today that the arcane and mystical formula that spits out the compensatory pick numbers has awarded no picks to the Minnesota Vikings, as was to be expected. The Green Bay Packers were awarded a third-round pick and a fifth-round pick, while the Detroit Lions received two fourth-round picks.

These compensatory picks are given at the end of the rounds they are tagged as part of, which means the four third-round picks that were awarded (Pittsburgh, Green Bay, Baltimore and San Francisco) take place at the end of the third round and before the fourth round.

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According to ESPN.com, the Vikings reportedly took their QB search to the west coast last week. On Thursday, offensive coordinator Norv Turner and general manager Rick Spielman visited Fresno State for Derek Carr‘s Pro Day.  The following day, the two met with San Jose State QB David Fales.

Despite suffering from the flu on Thursday, Carr delivered an above-average performance on Thursday, throwing 43 consecutive completions. He was intentional about the types of passes he made, offering a range of professional-level scenarios. “He wanted to prove he looked very comfortable under center and in the pocket today,” NFL Network’s Paul Burmeister said. “That’s exactly what his workout was setup to do.”

Thus far, Carr has not been expected to go in the first roundafter all, this year’s draft class is being called the deepest in several years. However, Carr has apparently received feedback from a variety of sources that lead him to believe he will break into Round One.

Carr worked through his illness to prove that he will have a strong presence in the Draft. In an interview with Burmeister, Carr said the following:

“From what I’ve heard from the Senior Bowl, the combine, meeting with teams in-between then, talking to teams, I think we’re going to surprise some people come May 8.”

Don’t expect the Vikings to use their No. 8 pick on Carr. At this point, several draft experts are placing Carr as a favorite to land in Oakland.  However, if Carr falls to No. 40 and the Vikes are still without a QB, he could be an option at the helm.

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On Friday, Turner and Spielman met with Fales at San Jose State.

According to the Sacramento Bee, the Vikings arranged a private workout with Fales. Two days prior, Fales hit 52 of his 53 passes at Pro Day. It is unclear whether or not Spielman had arranged the meeting before or after the QB’s solid Pro Day performance, but he certainly is an interesting prospect for Minny.

ESPN NFL analyst Trent Dilfer, who was at Fales’ pro day on Wednesday, called him a Trent Green clone.”

ESPN reports that Fales is projected to go as a mid-round pick, but his level of accuracy may raise him a bit in the draft. If Fales stays in the pool until the middle rounds and the Vikings have not yet taken a QB, he could be a strong option as a young QB who can develop under Matt Cassel for a season or two.

Considering Spielman has stated that Minnesota will likely get face time with at least 10 QB’s prior to May 8, a lot of mystery remains around which option will be the best fit and how early the Vikes will go for the QB position.

 

 

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