Purple Rumor Mill: New Dalvin Frontrunner, the Open Roster Spots, FA Kicker

Will Dalvin Cook Get on Track Against the Bears?
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports.

VikingsTerritory’s Purple Rumor Mill is a two-day chronicle each week. All the week’s rumors are lassoed and plopped in two spots — articles on Saturday and Sunday — for review. Today is the July 22nd edition.

Purple Rumor Mill: New Dalvin Frontrunner, the Open Roster Spots, FA Kicker

Remember — rumors are rumors. What you read on weekends in these pieces is what the world is talking about pertaining to the Vikings, not necessarily items that will come to fruition.

Here’s the first batch of the week.

Rumor: The Patriots are on top of the Dalvin Cook rumor mill.

Sports Predicts Dalvin
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports.

The Dalvin Cook rumor mill has spun for over four months. First, when the Vikings re-signed Alexander Mattison in March, folks assumed Cook would be traded or released, and they weren’t wrong. The process lasted until June 9th, culminating in Cook’s release.

Along the way, the Miami Dolphins were the routine frontrunner to end up with Cook, but as of this week, the odds shifted.

The New England Patriots are the odds-on favorite to ink the soon-to-be 28-year-old. Via DraftKings SportsbookThe Draft Network’s Jaime Eisner tweeted the live odds for Cook’s next team this week:

  • Patriots +150
  • Dolphins +200
  • Jets +400
  • Broncos +1200
  • Cowboys +1500
  • Bills +1500
  • Commanders +1500
  • Bears +1800
  • Giants +2000
  • Raiders +2000
  • Chiefs +3000
  • Eagles +3000
  • Browns +3500
  • Bucs +3500
  • Bengals +4000

And Vegas doesn’t typically swerve off kilter too often.

Rumor: The Vikings have 89 players, should have 91, and will sign two more soon.

Lottery Ticket QB
Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

After releasing the aforementioned Cook six weeks ago and waiving cornerback John Reid on Wednesday, Minnesota indeed has two open roster spots.

The club isn’t required to employ 91 players on the active roster at training camp, but it usually does so to cast a wide net.

So, yes, you should expect one or two players to hop onto the depth chart before too long, whether via free-agent signing or trade. Big-name free agents like Dalton Risner (OG), Marcus Peters (CB), Yannick Ngakoue (OLB), and Deion Jones (ILB) are still available.

Although, in these get-the-roster-to-90 situations (or 91, as the case may be), teams generally sign players that most of the world has never heard of.

Rumor: The Vikings should take a look at free-agent kicker Michael Badgley.

the Open Roster
Detroit Lions placekicker Michael Badgley (17) during minicamp at Detroit Lions Headquarters and Training Facility in Allen Park on Tuesday, June 6, 2023. © Junfu Han / USA TODAY NETWORK.

The Detroit Lions severed ties with Badgley this week, and he will live on the free-agent wire until further notice.

The Viking Age advanced the theory suggesting Minnesota should sign on his dotted line. TVA’s Adam Patrick wrote, “The Vikings might have felt there weren’t any decent enough kicking options available earlier this offseason. But there is now in Badgley, and Minnesota should strongly consider bringing him in to compete with Joseph to be the team’s starting kicker for next season.”

The Vikings also employ rookie kicker Jack Podlesny.

“This is a decision that has to be made quickly though. The Vikings likely can’t just wait and see if Joseph struggles this summer because there’s a good chance that Badgely is already going to have a new team by the start of the regular season,” Patrick concluded.

Badgley is, of course, an option for Minnesota’s 90-man roster, but clubs don’t usually have three kickers, even at training camp. His addition to the Vikings depth chart is a longshot.


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 Viking 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 OverTheCap.com.

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