As a fisherman, I know the feeling of the ones that get away.  One is always bigger and better than the one before it.  Every time a fish spits that hook, there is always a sinking feeling as I just know that fish was going to break some size record.

Of course, that isn’t always the case.

Last year, many fans regarded defensive end Ray Edwards and wide receiver Sidney Rice as big fish that the Vikings inexplicably let get away.  Less than one year later, both moves are starting to look very sensible, even if the team didn’t perform really well in their absence.

Neither Rice nor Edwards played particularly well in their first seasons with new teams.  Now, both are facing tough injuries in the offseason.

Edwards will have knee surgery for the second straight offseason after signing a five year deal with the Falcons worth about $30 million. 

Rice has had not one but two surgeries this offseason to repair a shoulder that he injured during the season.  His five year deal with the Seahawks is reportedly worth $41 million.

Neither injury is particularly career threatening, but the Vikings may have made the wise choice of letting these two walk last offseason instead of overpaying.

In the coming weeks, we will find out just what sort of compensation picks the Vikings will receive for letting Rice and Edwards find themselves new homes in different cities.