Vikings Lineman Avoids Legal Trouble in Miami

During the Minnesota Vikings bye week in October, offensive tackle Oli Udoh was arrested in Miami, an ode to the past for Vikings players’ tribulations on bye weeks.

According to a Miami-Dade Police report on October 22nd, Udoh “was talking to a woman standing in line for the women’s restroom. As the line moved forward, Udoh allegedly attempted to go into the women’s restroom, and Udoh refused to leave the area when the guard asked him to.”

Udoh was arrested.

Vikings Lineman Avoids Legal Trouble in Miami

But the brouhaha was short-lived, as all misdemeanor charges against Udoh were dropped on Thursday. Udoh’s attorney, Brian Bieber, commented, “Everyone who knows Oli never believed he committed a crime or did anything wrong.”

Vikings Lineman Avoids
Feb 28, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Minnesota Vikings tackle Oli Udoh. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports.

“The video evidence and eyewitness testimony we presented to the prosecutor made clear that the allegations in the police report were completely fabricated, and Oli was unlawfully arrested,” Bieber added.

Moreover, while dropping the charges, the State’s Attorney’s office stated that Udoh never entered any bathroom, and “the state concluded it would not be able to prove that the defendant committed the crimes charged.”

The Vikings selected Udoh in the 6th Round of the 2019 NFL draft from Elon University. He’s played 38 games in Minnesota, starting 16 — most in the 2021 season. Udoh started 16 games last year at right guard and was the franchise’s RG1 until Ed Ingram was drafted in April. He took a backseat on the Vikings offensive line under the new regime led by general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell. He’s only played 15 snaps on offense in 2022 and 64 special teams plays.

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Jul 29, 2022; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings offensive tackles Olisaemeka Udoh (74) and Brian O’Neill (75). Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

Udoh recorded a 54.4 Pro Football Focus grade in 2021 while playing 1,074 snaps. The 25-year-old also registered 13 penalties for 114 yards. Both marks were second-most in the NFL among all players, only trailing offensive lineman Connor Williams. Udoh has recorded a 72.2 Pro Football Focus grade in 2022, albeit in limited action.

The Vikings, as an organization, commented on Udoh’s arrest back in October, “We are aware of last night’s arrest of Oli Udoh and are gathering additional information at this time.” And the team now seems vindicated by sticking with Udoh.

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Sep 30, 2022; Thundridge, United Kingdom; Minnesota Vikings guard Olisaemeka Udoh (74) and offensive tackle Christian Darrisaw. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

Minnesota has an 11-3 record heading into Week 16 and hosts the New York Giants on Christmas Eve. Udoh will play, and the Vikings are favored by four points. The Giants haven’t defeated the Vikings in nine years. Minnesota has won three straight over New York, including all matchups in the Mike Zimmer era. The Vikings and Giants could meet in the postseason, too, at U.S. Bank Stadium, so Saturday’s game could serve as a teaser trailer.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).