Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Tags Posts tagged with "joe berger"

joe berger

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Week 17 Chicago 2014 by Matt Engstrom
Image courtesy of Matt Engstrom

In the past two weeks, Vikings fans have had the pleasure (or pain) of welcoming players like Mike Wallace and Shaun Hill to the team, hoping their additions will lead to continued improvement in 2015. But, the greetings aren’t always so simple — fans were forced to say goodbye to veteran wide receiver Greg Jennings this offseason, and may soon see Adrian Peterson out the door.

The Vikings, however, aren’t the only team making these types of moves — our NFC North neighbors in Green Bay, Detroit, and Chicago have been busy tinkering and fine-tuning their rosters.

A look at the latest news out of the “Black and Blue” division, AFTER THE JUMP!:

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

Although the Minnesota Vikings have been relatively quiet in free agency, they’ve made a few moves that could have lasting impacts heading into the 2015 season.

Splashy trades, surprising releases, and expensive free agent signings usually dominate headlines, but sometimes, the smaller, less-publicized transactions make or break a team’s season.

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Image courtesy of Vikings.com

The Vikings signed offensive lineman Joe Berger to a two year deal on Tuesday and, at the moment, it appears possible he could be penciled in as the starting left guard.

Berger did not exactly get paid like a starter, with David Yankey as his primary in-house competition, but we can scratch one potential free agency solution off the list. The Cincinatti Bengals, according to reports, have retained free agent guard Clint Boling.

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According to ESPN’s Ben Goessling, the Vikings have re-signed offensive lineman Joe Berger to a two-year deal. The news came through Berger’s agent, Tom Tafelski.

Berger was listed in a USA Today article regarding NFL free agency Monday morning, and there was some question as to whether or not he would remain with the Vikings.

Earlier this year, Chris Tomasson wrote the following about Berger’s unlikely NFL career:

[Berger] was a skinny walk-on in 2000 at Division II Michigan Tech, which he attended to get an engineering degree.

After a redshirt season and two years on the team, nobody regarded Berger as a pro prospect. When the school announced it would drop football in 2003, Berger decided he would continue classes in Houghton, Mich., rather than transfer to another school to play football.

Two weeks later, the school decided to keep the football program, and Berger closed his college career with two solid seasons. The native of Newaygo, Mich., only can wonder where he might now be had that not happened.

“I’d be happily working as an engineer somewhere,” Berger said. “I’d be in west Michigan enjoying life, not knowing any different.”

Joe Berger has been a veteran presence on the Minnesota Vikings offensive line for 3 seasons. He joined the Vikings in week 2 of the 2011 season after originally being selected by the Carolina Panthers in the 6th round of the 2005 NFL draft. He has appeared in 83 regular season games with 29 starts in his 10 year career with Carolina, Dallas, Miami and Minnesota.

Berger has been a solid reserve contributor for the Vikings playing in 45 games and starting 9 times. Berger is a versatile player who can contribute on special teams and has starting experience at center and both guard positions.

In 2013 Berger saw action in all 16 games with starts against Washington in week 10 and Philadelphia in week 15.

Joe Berger just signed a one year deal in March for $920,000. His cap hit is only $635,000 so from a dollars-and-cents stand point he is probably not in any danger of being cut. Berger’s performance is also at a satisfactory enough level to safely project him onto the 53 man roster again this season. The only question is his age. Berger celebrates his 32nd birthday on May 25th… wait, that’s today.

Happy Birthday Joe!

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