Free Agency

Report: Terence Newman Wants to Re-Sign

Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press is reporting a source close to Terence Newman said the 37-year-old cornerback wants to return for another season with the Vikings.

Newman signed a one-year, $2.25 million contract before last season, and will become an unrestricted free agent on March 9. Up to this point, he has declined to say if he will retire or return for another year. If he does play in 2016, he will be the oldest defensive player in the NFL.

It’s likely the Vikings would welcome Newman back with open arms. He’s a Mike Zimmer favorite, and while he isn’t the same player he once was physically, Newman played well as a starter in 2015 and provided critical veteran leadership at corner. Ideally, he would step into a smaller role next season—similar to what we’ve seen with Chad Greenway—while Trae Waynes or another player assumes the starting job and Newman is relied on for depth and versatility.

Safety?

A common quick-fix idea among fans is to have Newman finish his career at safety. This would solve the pesky strong safety problem the Vikings have had for years, adding stability to the position (in the short-term, at least) and stopping the revolving door next to Harrison Smith. He did start one game at safety last season because of injuries, but management has been hesitant to sign off on the idea wholeheartedly. Last year, both Zimmer and Rick Spielman said they still think Newman is a corner. Newman, for his part, sounds open to it.

“All options are in play in the future,” he told ESPN’s Ben Goessling in December. “I think I can still play corner. I can play safety. I’ll do whatever the team asks me to do. I like playing football. My biggest thing is trying to stay in the door. That’s the first and foremost.”

It sounds like that door is opening a littler wider, and it’s Newman’s choice if he wants to walk through it.

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Sam Neumann

Sam Neumann is a freelance writer and lifelong Vikings apologist. He has seen his share of Vikings-related heartbreak, but believes we are united by the hope that one day that norse ship will come in. Sam is the author of three books, including the New York Times Bestseller Memoirs of a Gas Station. He lives in Denver, Colorado, and has had it with Broncos fans. You can follow him on twitter @NeumSamN.

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6 Comments

  1. i like newman. he held his own last year and is like an on-field coach for zimmer. i’d like him on the team, but, if we can do it, mostly in a back-up role for CB and S, and then see waynes starting at corner, and another good new safety with smith. i don’t think sendejo is gonna cut it, and i also don’t think our back-ups from last year have shown enough yet to be a starting S. iloka will probably be too expensive, so i think we’ll draft a S for zimmer to mold

    but, yeah, for one more year, we can keep old newman, and gray greenway, too

  2. I’d rather sign Adam Jones to start opposite Rhodes and then bring Newman back as a super-sub. Jones’ coverage skills are still there and Zimmer appears to be the only coach to successfully get him to cut back on the penalties in a big way.

    I’ve always liked Husain Abdullah and he has graded out positively every year at Pro Football Focus so he’d be my choice for a fairly inexpensive safety pick up to play opposite Hitman Harry and mentor Anthony Harris and/or Antone Exum. I’d bring Sendejo back because we can live with him if he has to start and he’s solid on special teams and in the locker room.

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