Sunday, July 23, 2017

Eddie Lacy

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Adrian
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Well folks, ol’ number 28 is at it again. Yes indeed, the currently unemployed Adrian Peterson has made another social media post attempting to explain his position and, this time, his desires in free agency. This one took the form of a Twitter picture, of what appears like an Instagram caption, even though the statement doesn’t seem to be live on Instagram. I’m confused as well.

It’s hard to fault Peterson for trying to tell his side of the story; there has been a lot reported about him this offseason, and anonymous sources often turn out to be inaccurate. And it’s nice to have, as he put it, some information “Straight from the horse’s mouth.” According to Adrian, his main objective is finding a good fit with a team that can content for a Super Bowl. He also says he’s in no rush to commit, which is either a valid explanation for why he hasn’t signed a contract yet, or posturing, as other, lower-profile running backs get scooped up and Peterson remains without a team.

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And other Free Agency thoughts

Eddie Lacy to the Vikings Makes Sense
Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Say what you will about Eddie Lacy’s eating habits or his love of Chinese food, but the former Packers running back is a perfect fit for the Minnesota Vikings. In his five-year career, he’s gained more than 3,400 yards and scored 23 times, averaging 4.4 yards per carry in Green Bay’s pass-happy offense.

Nevermind his weight; Minnesota knows all too well how effective Lacy can be on the ground. In seven games against the division rival Vikings, Lacy amassed 618 yards and scored five touchdowns to contribute to Green Bay’s four series victories. At 5’11” and 231 pounds, he’s a load to bring down and the potential “thunder” to complement the “lightning” that is Jerick McKinnon in Minnesota’s backfield.

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Welcome to the next installment of our Vikings Free Agency Primer series: the running backs. Check out our other primers on tight ends, defensive ends, cornerbacks, safetiesquarterbacks, wideouts, and defensive tackles.

Ah yes, here we are. The inevitable departure of Adrian Peterson has happened, and we can take a clear look at the Vikings running back situation and what to do about it.

LAST SEASON

It wasn’t good. The Vikings were dead last in the league in rushing last year, and while much of that can (and should) be attributed to the floundering offensive line play, none of the backs did much to inspire hope, either.

Peterson only played in three games due to injury, rushing 37 times for 72 yards—a putrid 1.9-yard average. While we’ll fondly remember the AP glory days—he is, without a doubt, one of the greatest players in franchise history—his legendary burst has mellowed, his injuries have begun to pile up, and his cost is most likely too high for a return. The fanbase is ready to move on, and you get the feeling Adrian is, too. It would be surprising if the Vikings re-signed him.

The absence of Peterson thrust Jerick McKinnon into the lead role in 2016, finally giving us the long look at the shifty back many fans had anxiously awaited. It went…fine. McKinnon carried the ball 159 times for 539 yards (3.4 YPC) and two touchdowns, and also had 43 catches for 255 yards and another two TDs. Again, it’s difficult for any runner to perform well without holes to run through—the YPC average was by far the lowest of his career—but McKinnon never really displayed the electrifying ability we hoped he possessed. It may still be in there, but calls for McKinnon to receive more touches have temporarily been silenced.

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Minnesota Vikings Free Agency

Free Agency is rapidly approaching and fans of the Minnesota Fightin’ Vikings are clamoring for who could be on the Purple’s shopping list. I know the Draft is the bee’s knees, but this episode is focused solely on free agency (until the end). We walk through the level of priority the Vikings should have on their in-house free agents, I reveal my Top-10 Free Agent Wish List, and wrap up with a clip from my new project BULL with Andy Carlson — Jordan Reid (@JReidDraftScout) of The Viking Age walks us through a 7-round (but really 6-round) Vikings mock draft.

All that and more “Free agency is like the Scholastic Book Fair” chatter on this edition of the Purple FTW! Podcast!

An AMG Production

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Here we are, finally and officially having reached the NFL offseason. Let’s take a moment to watch the above video, Xavier Rhodes mic’d up in the Pro Bowl, before moving on to a revival of the ol’ links of the week post. One takeaway on the Rhodes video: he certainly has the temperament of a top-flight cornerback, so we have that going for us. The segment is worth watching just to see him shoot the breeze with some of the best receivers in the game, like Odell Beckham and Dez Bryant.

Now, let’s see what’s happening in the rest of Vikings land.

  • Matt Vensel wrote a quick blog examining what it would take for the Vikings to move back into the first round of the Draft. He uses the 29th pick as a hypothetical target, because the end of the round is the most attainable and realistic scenario. Basically, Vensel says it’s possible the Vikings could use their second- and third-round picks to get back into round one, which doesn’t sound too bad, considering they possess two third- and fourth-rounders. So under this hypothetical, they could end up with a late first, one third, one fourth, and so on. Chances are they’d have to throw in a late rounder to sweeten the pot, but I don’t think anyone would complain.

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