5 Surprise Players Who Could Make Vikings 53-Man Roster

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VikingsTerritory writers were asked to provide one surprise player apiece for the Minnesota Vikings who will make the regular season roster in September. For example, cornerback NaJee Thompson made the team last summer, and few saw that coming.

All writers came up with a different selection, an organic outcome.

5 Surprise Players Who Could Make Vikings 53-Man Roster

These are the surprise players who could make the squad.

1. Bo Richter (OLB)

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Prediction Maker: Josh Frey

Richter was among the most productive pass rushers in college football last year. The Vikings have acquired oodles of talent at that spot over the past couple of months, but even still, Richter will find a way to stand out in camp.

2. Gabriel Murphy (OLB)

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Prediction Maker: Cole Smith

The UCLA product slid in the draft due to his size (6’2″, 245 pounds, 30.5″ arms). Despite that, he was still productive enough (eight sacks, 16 TFL) to be Honorable Mention All-Pac-12 in 2023.

3. Andrew Booth (CB)

Fears Confirmed: Vikings Rookie Lost for Season
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Prediction Maker:
Ted Schwerzler

It’s basically the end of the line for the former second-round pick, and he has yet to put it all together. With a cornerback room ready to force him out, give me the youngster stepping up in the face of adversity.

4. Taki Taimani (DT)

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Prediction Maker
: Dustin Baker

Somewhat quietly, the Vikings don’t really have a nose tackle on the roster outside of Harrison Phillips, who is small for an NT in the first place. Taimani weighs about 330 pounds, and by default, he has a decent chance to make the active roster because of his size.

Minnesota could also re-sign Sheldon Day and call it good, but let’s go with this Oregon Duck as a sneaky roster holdover.

5. Jeshaun Jones (WR)

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Prediction Maker: Janik Eckardt

The undrafted rookie signed a contract with the Vikings that included high guarantees. Minnesota’s staff clearly sees some potential in the former Maryland wideout. He is an explosive player with experience in the slot. Following K.J. Osborn’s departure, there is an opening at wide receiver, and Jones will surprise folks in training camp and snatch a roster spot and perhaps a rotational role on offense.


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

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

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