Other Free Agents for Vikings to Consider

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With the 2023 NFL Draft now behind us, how does that affect the Minnesota Vikings free agency strategy in 2023? After trading away Za’Darius Smith to the Browns, Minnesota has $9.5 million in cap space. So. what positions are in need?

Other Free Agents for Vikings to Consider

Minnesota did address some needs in the draft, but there are still some question marks. Most notably, the Vikes need help with the front-seven unit. And this ClutchPoints article details some potential options to consider. But who should the Vikings go after in free agency?

What Positions Need A Look?

Statistically speaking, the Vikings were near the bottom of the barrel in the 2022 season when discussing sacks allowed and total rushing yards. Meanwhile, the defense has glaring holes at linebacker and defensive line. VT’s own Jeff Diamond has his own ideas for the Vikings to pursue here. However, a large chunk of the big-name free agents are already off the market at this point.

Minnesota Vikings Free Agency Strategy: Help on the O-Line

As Liam Hanley in his ClutchPoints article notes, one of his suggestions is offensive guard Dalton Risner, formerly of the Denver Broncos. His reasoning: “Brian O’Neill and Christian Darrisaw make a solid offensive tackle pairing, but the interior of the Vikings’ offensive line is a weak point. Risner allowed just three sacks and committed one penalty in 2022, and at the age of 27, he can give the Vikings some longevity at the guard position.” Those aren’t bad numbers.

Other Free Agents for
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However, there might be one other option the Gjallarhorn could consider, and that should be Bobby Hart. Sure, his listed primary position is tackle, but he has the versatility to slide inside to guard. Having that quality is important as an offensive player, which could benefit the Vikings.

Vikings Free Agency Strategy: Turning to the Front 7 on Defense

With Smith now out of the picture and Eric Kendricks leaving for the Chargers already this off-season, the Vikes’ Front 7 depth appears to be a bit thin. VT’s Dustin Baker gives his own suggestions to boost the D, including Kyle Van Noy and Deion Jones here.

Van Noy, especially, would be an intriguing addition to the squad because he once played under Brian Flores, the current defensive coordinator in Minnesota. As Baker notes, “Ties from coaches to former players are vital and widespread in the NFL. Like the mindset from Deion Jones, Van Noy would offer a steady veteran presence in the Vikings locker room. He’s old — 32 — but has played in 128 games throughout his career. And we already know he’s a scheme fit for Flores.” Van Noy could certainly bring some major help to the linebacker room.

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But the D-line also needs some attention. Thus, the Vikings free agency strategy could lead to them picking up a guy like Shelby Harris. A defensive end who has previously been in action with the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks, Harris is familiar with playing in a 3-4 defensive system. Thus, he would make a wonderful fit for Flores’ new regime. And he can play as a starter or be a key rotation piece off the bench.

Final Thoughts on the Vikings’ Free Agency Strategy

With $9.5+ million in free cap space, the Vikings certainly have some options to play with in free agency. If they can find a great value pick, this team could certainly compete again in the 2023 season.