Vikings Skinny CB Room Amplified Monday

The Vikings Final Injury Report: Week 10
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Two events occurred Monday that accentuated the Minnesota Vikings skinny cornerback room as NFL free agency kicked off.

Foremost, Patrick Peterson bolted for the Pittsburgh Steelers on a two-year, $14 million deal, likely the final stop of the future Hall of Famer’s magnificent career.

Vikings Skinny CB Room Amplified Monday

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport tweeted, “Source: The Steelers are signing Pro Bowl CB Patrick Peterson. A surprise! A perennial star headed to a historic franchise to beef up their back end.” And that was that.

Vikings Skinny CB Room
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So, for better or worse, Peterson will not rejoin the 2023 Vikings, an undecided determination heading into Monday morning. But that wasn’t all for the CB purge.

The Vikings released 24-year-old Cameron Dantzler on Friday, and he’s assuredly not returning to Minnesota anytime soon, as the fourth-year defender landed with the Washington Commanders.

The Pioneer Press’ Chris Tomasson tweeted, “Washington Commanders claim CB Cameron Dantzler off waivers after he was let go last Friday by Vikings. So they pick up the non-guaranteed $2.743 million he has been due to make in the final year of his contract.”

Former Viking Can Reach
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Free-agent hero from 2022, Duke Shelley, could re-sign at any moment — Vikings fans are cheering vociferously for that transaction — but Minnesota’s batch of corners is terribly underwhelming at the moment. Beyond the shadow of a doubt, with the non-reunions of Peterson and Dantzler, cornerback is the Vikings foremost offseason need.

Here’s the Vikings CB state of play as of March 13th at 7:30 pm CST:

  • Kalon Barnes
  • Andrew Booth
  • Akayleb Evans
  • Tay Gowan
Grim Injury News for Vikings CB
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Unless one or some of those men have an absolutely glorious training camp and preseason, the Vikings are in rough shape at one of the league’s most critical positions. General manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah can still explore free-agent relationships with James Bradberry, Shaquill Griffin, William Jackson, Byron Murphy, or Marcus Peters, among others, but the clock is ticking as all NFL teams are flocking to the open market for new players.

Moreover, if the Vikings “do nothing” or sign a relatively anonymous player in free agency, the draft need for a corner — in early rounds — intensifies, probably in Round 1 or 2. Minnesota holds the No. 23 pick in April’s draft, a decent spot to select a coveted young corner like Deonte Banks from Maryland or Devin Witherspoon from Illinois. Many Vikings fans expect Adofo-Mensah to trade out of the 23rd overall pick, so perhaps a cornerback could arrive from Round 2. We shall see.

But now is the time, as a fan, to intently watch the team’s CB maneuvering. No Peterson and no Dantzler, plus Shelley’s up-in-the-air status, means Brian Flores needs cornerbacks for his shiny new defense.

A team with playoff aspirations cannot limp into a season showcasing unproven cornerbacks. It doesn’t work that way anymore.

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 Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).

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