Is It Over for Brian Asamoah?

Defender on the Road
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It wasn’t long ago that Brian Asamoah was a third-round pick out of Oklahoma, and it wasn’t too deep into his rookie season that it appeared he was going to be a difference-maker. He played 16 games in his first year, and another step forward was expected in 2023. Then it didn’t happen.

Is It Over for Brian Asamoah?

When the Minnesota Vikings hired Kevin O’Connell as their new head coach to replace Mike Zimmer, there were always going to be growing pains. Players would feel that and so would the organization. Unfortunately for Brian Asamoah, though, he felt the hit most when Brian Flores took over last season as the defensive coordinator.

It's Officially Brian Asamoah Time
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Eric Kendricks had departed for greener pastures as an aging veteran, and the Vikings were understandably going to be searching for answers. Rather than Asamoah providing one, though, undrafted free agent Ivan Pace Jr. quickly overtook him, and he became an afterthought for the defense.

Playing in just 13 games last season, Asamoah recorded only seven tackles. With his sparing usage in 2022, the 17 total tackles weren’t a surprise. The lack of opportunity last year had him largely without a position to make an impact, and as Pace continued to carve out a greater role, less became certain for Asamoah.

Minnesota Vikings Head Coach Kevin O’Connell introduced new Defensive Coordinator Brian Flores from the TCO Performance Center on February 15th, 2023. Flores coached for the New England Patriots, Miami Dolphins, and Pittsburgh Steelers before joining the Vikings in 2023.

Now behind Blake Cashman, who was brought in as a free agent, Asamoah has another hurdle to overcome when looking for playing time. Pace is already well-established as a starter, and with the recent acquisition of Kamu Grugier-Hill, his backup is also spoken for. There’s a potential for Asamoah to integrate himself into the starting lineup again, but that would likely mean something else has gone sideways.

Depth and special teams players will always be necessary on NFL franchises’ 53-man rosters, but it’s relatively jarring to see such a young player go from a positive trajectory to completely falling off. Asamoah’s story is definitely not done being written, and entering his third year in the league, he’ll have another after this campaign to make an impact for the Vikings. Maybe he finds a better result somewhere else down the line, but it couldn’t have taken a more unexpected turn after how it started.

brian asamoah
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On the flip side, be thankful that Pace exists!

Ted Schwerzler is a blogger from the Twin Cities that is focused on all things Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Vikings. He’s active on Twitter and writes weekly for Twins Daily. As a former college athlete and avid sports fan, covering our pro teams with a passion has always seemed like such a natural outlet.