Vikings CB Heads to the Desert

Ex-Viking Joins 4th Team in 71 Days
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The Arizona Cardinals employ oodles of former Minnesota Vikings coaches, and they added a familiar player on Monday.

Kris Boyd became a Cardinal after four seasons in Minnesota.

Vikings CB Heads to the Desert

The Arizona Republic‘s Bob McManaman tweeted, “The Cardinals have signed CB Kris Boyd to a 1-year contract. Boyd, 5-11, 195 pounds, spent the past four seasons with the Vikings, appearing in 58 games (6) and recording 95 tackles with four fumble recoveries and two forced fumbles. He also made 29 tackles on special teams.”

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To date, Arizona has fortified its new 2023 coaching staff with several coaches from the Vikings Mike Zimmer era:

  • HC = Jonathan Gannon
  • DC = Nick Rallis
  • OC = Drew Petzing
  • DL = Robert Rodriguez
  • LBs = Sam Seifkes

Jonathan Gannon was an assistant Vikings defensive backs coach in 2017 — the year Minnesota scooped Boyd out of the 7th Round from the University of Texas. So, the move checks out for coach-player ties prevalent during free agency.

CB Heads to
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Boyd played just 37 defensive snaps in 2022, head coach Kevin O’Connell’s first year on the job, but was a keynote special teams performer. He was on the field 82% of the time for special teams, meaning some unknown Viking will step in this season to fill “the Boyd role.”

During his career in purple, Boyd produced this passer-rating-against resume:

  • 2019 = 89.6
  • 2020 = 121.4
  • 2021 = 114.7
  • 2022 = 127.1

The Cardinals have Antonio Hamilton, Marco Wilson, Christian Matthew, Rashad Fenton, and Nate Hairston under contract at cornerback, and it is unclear if Boyd will experience substantial playing time on defense.

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Minnesota, on the other hand, has CBs Byron Murphy, Andrew Booth, Akayleb Evans, Tay Gowan, and Kalon Barnes, a group likely needing an injection of depth before too long. Boyd’s departure is the latest in an offseason where Patrick Peterson, Duke Shelley, and Cameron Dantzler left the franchise. Slot cornerback Chandon Sullivan may not return, either.

Arizona’s defense struggled mightily in 2022, ranking 24th in passing yards allowed, 27th in 3rd Down conversion percentage allowed, 31st in points allowed, and last in completion percentage allowed. The only place to go is up.

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In addition to the litany of former coaches, the Cardinals have David Blough (QB), Blake Lynch (LB), and the aforementioned Hairston on the depth chart as ex-Vikings.

Boyd will turn 27 in September.

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).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by