Folkloric and Infamous Ex-Vikings Appear in Preseason Game
Multiple former Vikings players appeared in the Hall of Fame Game, a preseason game scheduled in Canton, Ohio, to honor the Hall of Fame. The Jaguars and the Raiders faced each other. The Raiders ran away with a 27-11 victory, but how did the former Vikings play, and what are their chances to make the roster?
Former Vikings in Jacksonville
The quarterback was part of some controversy during his Vikings tenure. He regularly outplayed backup quarterbacks but couldn’t make the roster. The Vikings signed him in 2017 after he was waived by the Broncos, despite some preseason heroics and a shaky quarterback room. He spent most of the year on the Vikings’ active roster after Sam Bradford’s knee injury.
In the 2018 preseason, the passer had his first game action as a Viking. His performances led to wins against the Seahawks and the Jaguars. Especially noteworthy was his performance against the Seahawks. He scored twice and almost singlehandedly won the game. Siemian made the roster despite struggling.
In 2019, Sloter once again outplayed the designated backup QB, Sean Mannion but was waived. The explanation was that he didn’t have Mannion’s football mind and struggled to call plays and read defenses. Since then, he bounces around in the league and hopes to get a shot somewhere. In 2021, he was once again a Viking for one week because of Cousins’ stint on the COVID list. He joined the USFL, where he landed on the All-USFL team, despite throwing more interceptions than touchdowns.
The Jaguars signed the former Vikings passer, and he played in the preseason game against the Raiders. Both teams rested most of their starters, so depth players could show their worth. Sloter played in the second half after Jake Luton started the game. He completed 13 of 25 passes for 127 yards and scored the only Jaguars touchdown. While the numbers look good, Sloter missed some passes and didn’t look as sharp as in some games for the Vikings. The Raiders also dropped a couple of interceptions. His gunslinging mentality is still part of his game.
He’ll have a tough time making the roster. Trevor Lawrence and his backup C.J. Beathard didn’t play in that game. The fact that Luton started the game over him isn’t a great sign. He must beat out Luton and most likely Beathard to be part of the final 53-man roster. It’s very likely that the quarterback will be looking for a new team soon.
The infamous former Viking was the 2016 first-round pick and was supposed to become the top receiver for quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. Own struggles and the emergence of Thielen and Diggs prevented that. In four seasons, he totaled just 701 yards and two touchdowns, followed by another disappointing season in Atlanta. In 2021, however, he had a bounce-back year in Jacksonville and recorded over 400 yards.
Treadwell caught one pass for three yards against the Raiders. The Jaguars signed Christian Kirk and Zay Jones to big deals in free agency. Marvin Jones, the former Detroit Lion, is also on the team, just like former second-round pick Laviska Shenault. Jamal Agnew has one spot locked up as a return specialist and depth wideout. Rookie Kelvin Austin is another threat for Treadwell. After his productive 2021 season, Treadwell will be on someone’s 53-man roster. The question is if it will be in Jacksonville or somewhere else. His chapter in Jacksonville could end after the preseason.
Former Vikings in Las Vegas
The running back played for the purple team between 2018 and 2021 and appeared in 45 games as a backup running back and special teams player. Abdullah recorded 360 scrimmage yards and three scores. In the preseason game, the Raider had two carries and two receptions for a total of 31 yards. He also scored a rushing touchdown.
Like Sloter, Abdullah is at risk of missing out on the 53-man roster. Josh Jacobs, Kenyan Drake, and rookie Zamir White appear to be ahead of him on the depth chart.
Carlson’s time in Minnesota is another infamous one. The kicker was a fifth-round pick in 2018. He missed three kicks against the Packers, and the Vikings waived him immediately after the game that ended in a tie. Subsequently, the Raiders picked him up, and he looks like a potential Hall of Famer. The Vikings should’ve been more patient with Carlson and tried to fix some mechanical issues. He is a back-to-back NFL scoring leader and a 2021 second-team All-Pro.
Like always, he was perfect for the Raiders. He hit all five kicks, two field goals, and three extra points. One field goal was a 55-yarder. The former Vikings kicker will be on the Raiders roster for a long time beyond the preseason and remind Vikings fans what they could have.
Bower is a defensive end and had multiple stints in Minnesota. He appeared in 11 games and recorded one sack. Overall, he provided depth and was part of the practice squad. He now plays for the Raiders and recorded one tackle in the game against the Jaguars. He is very much on the roster bubble, and it wouldn’t be a big surprise if he doesn’t make the team.
The Vikings will open their preseason against the Raider and play against multiple former players on August 14th. They will face Carlson, Abdullah, and Bower.
Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt