Sunday, December 11, 2016

anquan boldin

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The time of year where NFL executives hold their breathes and pray that the next offseason headline doesn’t involve one of their players is almost over. The news of suspensions and accusations and allegations and social media revelations will soon give way to some actual between-the-hashes updates. For that reason, it is time to reboot our weekly glance at the nemeses (yes, that’s the plural version of “nemesis,” I looked it up!) of the Minnesota Vikings: The NFC North competition.

NFC NORTH COMPETITION: Chicago Bears

The biggest news out of Chicago this week involved an utility pole getting blown to bits during an epic lightning storm (hence the video above) and I’m leading with that for no other reason than that I was there for the storm, my tidbit on the Bears is much less exciting than the two listed below it, and the video is pretty freaking cool.

Former Bears defensive end Corey Wootton has decided to retire after six NFL seasons which ended in the preseason last preseason when he suffered a torn pectoral and ended up on Detroit’s injured reserve. Wootton, as you will likely recall, played for the 2013 season with the Vikings.

The details surrounding the Percy Harvin trade continue to trickle in and we nearly have achieved a full picture of what exactly went down.

The Vikings traded away the 24 year old superstar and received a trio of draft picks in return.

In 2013 the Vikings will get Seattle’s first round pick (25) and one of their seventh round picks (currently unknown which one).  In addition, multiple outlets are reporting that the Vikings received a 2014 third round pick as part of the deal.

That may not be the end of it.  Often time future picks are conditional and it could end up changing rounds if that is the case here, and it is possible that other intricacies are involved here, such as switching picks in one round or another in the Draft.  That might not be the case, but we have seen those details come out later on down the road on a number of occasions in the past, including last offseason’s trade that sent A.J. Jefferson to the Vikings.

Trading such a young and explosive talent may not be the ideal situation, but if you are going to do it then this is the type of compensation you want to get, and Rick Spielman deserves credit for maximizing the deal.  I can’t help but wonder if he was able to artificially inflate his asking price by pitting San Francisco and Seattle, division rivals, against one another in a bidding war.  Not long after the Harvin news broke, the Niners traded for Anquan Boldin who had previously been believed to be a likely cap causality of the Ravens.

The Vikings now have 11 picks in the 2013 Draft.  Five of those picks are in the top 100, at least until compensatory picks are awarded, and they are currently in a position to add two first round selections to their rebuilding efforts for the second offseason in a row.

One of the final big pieces of information we need to evaluate this trade is the contract that Harvin signs with the Seahawks, as it will more accurately portray what the Vikings would have had to sacrifice to keep him around.

On the same day that the Vikings receiver depth chart was blown to smithereens  by a deal that sent Percy Harvin to Seattle, Rick Spielman made his first attempt at reconstructing it.

And he missed.

Pro Football Talk reports that the Vikings offered a seventh round pick to the Baltimore Ravens in exchange for 32 year old Anquan Boldin and his $6 million salary.  The San Francisco 49ers, who couldn’t be happy about Percy Harvin just joining their division rivals, were the high bidder with a sixth round pick.

Immediately following the Harvin trade Vikings fans, via Twitter and Facebook, immediately ran a long list of potential replacements through their heads.  Victor Cruz (tendered with a first rounder), numerous prospects, Greg Jennings, and Mike Wallace are at the forefront of those conversations.

Boldin, once a premier wide out in this league, is on nearing the end of his career and I have to say that I am not too terribly disappointed that this trade didn’t come to fruition.  He might prove me wrong in San Francisco for a year or two, but I just didn’t feel like news of trading for Boldin was the right medicine for just watching Percy Harvin walk out the front door.

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