Vikings Free Agency: 5 Available Defenders Who Make Sense for Minnesota

Last week, I published a Top 32 FAs for the Minnesota Vikings on PurplePTSD. The initial moments of the NFL’s tampering period has led to some notable subtractions of defensive talent.

Nevertheless, the Vikings still have some good options among this year’s batch of free agents. If Kwesi Adofo-Mensah is looking to improve the defense – he is – then there are some players who make an awful lot of sense.

Earlier in the day, we learned that Jordan Hicks will return. Even still, linebacker remains a need. Corner and EDGE are also needs.

Below, you’ll find 5 players to consider alongside the write ups that are included in the original PurplePTSD piece. Hop over using the link above if you’re interested in seeing the full thing. There are even 18 names included below as honorable mentions. As a result, the piece includes 50 total names.

In the meantime, enjoy the appetizer right here on Vikings Territory.

Vikings Free Agency

1) CB Jamel Dean: Dean is possibly the CB1 in this year’s group of FAs. Now, there needs to be some caution since last year’s top corner – J.C. Jackson – didn’t exactly live up to expectations in Year 1 with the Chargers. Nevertheless, Dean is 26 and has the capacity to be a top corner in the NFL. He’s long & strong, blazing fast, and has put together 4 years of strong play. Possibly the main concern rests in him failing to play a full season so far.

2) LB David Long: Vikings fans are covetous of improved linebacker play. He is only 26 but is coming off an injury. Spotrac puts his market value at a $4.9 million per-year average. Coming off the injury dampens the enthusiasm somewhat, but Kendricks has been cut, opening a clear need. The projected average suggests he could be a value addition.

3) EDGE Ogbonnia Okoronkwo: He should be cheaper than a lot of the other edge rushers and is familiar with the coaching staff due to their shared time with the Rams. He finished 4th in ESPN’s run stop win rate. His deal had a cap hit at $3.25 million last season.

4) CB Rock Ya-Sin: The 34th pick in the 2019 Draft, Ya-Sin is 26 years old. He has yet to play a full NFL season and only has 2 interceptions in his career (with 27 PDs across 4 seasons). Nevertheless, he’s a long corner who may go cheaper than the projected price. PFF notes his ability to play man coverage. Mr. Flores may be intrigued.

5) EDGE Justin Houston: The veteran has been on my radar for a little while. Last season, Houston rewarded the Ravens with a 9.5-sack, 7-TFL season. Though he’s already 34, Houston can still thrive in a rotational role. He only had a $3.5 million cap hit in 2022.

Editor’s Note: The write ups are taken from “The Final List: The Top 32 Free Agents for the Minnesota Vikings (w/ 18 Honorable Mentions).” That article relied on information from Pro Football Reference, PFF, Spotrac, and Over the Cap to help with the piece.