Infamous Former Viking Waived by Jets

Infamous Former Viking Waived by Jets
May 22, 2019; Eagan, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings offensive guard Dru Samia. Mandatory Credit: David Berding-USA TODAY Sports.

The Minnesota Vikings have three potential solutions this summer to solve longstanding right guard woes dating back to the 2018 season. Those proposed fixes are men named Jesse Davis, Ed Ingram, and Chris Reed. One man will emerge in September as the team’s RG1.

And Minnesota has three possible candidates for the job because right guards from the Mike Zimmer era floundered mightily. One of those personalities was Dru Samia, a guard drafted by Minnesota in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Well, Samia didn’t last long at his new place of employment, as the 24-year-old was waived by the New York Jets on Tuesday. He failed a physical.

Samia was a part of a hypothetical RG solution in the 2020 season for the Vikings. He and former Viking Dakota Dozier were tapped for guard duty during the pandemic season, and the two dueled for “who’s worse” designation. Samia’s Pro Football Focus grade in 2020 was a lowly 33.1 — with a ghastly 17.0 pass-blocking score. His pal Dozier notched a 44.6 grade from PFF in 2020.

Neither man played any offensive snaps for any team in 2021.

Feb 28, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Oklahoma offensive lineman Dru Samia. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports.

The forecast for Samia wasn’t always bleak, though. Heading into the 2019 season — with vast rookie upside — he was considered “mean and nasty,” biding his time to terrorize defenders on the Vikings offensive line. But the mean and nasty quickly morphed into parking cone and not good for the Oklahoma alumnus.

Samia’s once-exciting trajectory was borne of his draft placement. The Vikings found him in Round 4 of the 2019 NFL Draft, a spot where NFL guards can blossom. And because the Vikings needed improved guard play, Samia was theorized as the fix.

Now, his future is unclear. A failed physical isn’t ideal, and Samia didn’t play any regular season snaps with the Jets in 2021. He left the Vikings after the 2020 season, ending up on New York’s practice squad. If he signs elsewhere, he’ll probably land on the practice squad again and attempt a career reclamation.

The aforementioned Dozier signed with the Chicago Bears this spring but was lost to injury in June. Dozier won’t play in 2022 after a knee injury at Bears minicamp.

Samia was teammates with Mark Andrews, Baker Mayfield, Joe Mixon, and Kyler Murray at Oklahoma.

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 Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).

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