The Vikings Should Sign These 2 Men — After the Risner Addition

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The Minnesota Vikings are two free-agent additions away from truly cooking with gas and completing a wondrous offseason.

The Vikings Should Sign These 2 Men — After the Risner Addition

The club re-signed Dalton Risner on Wednesday after about four months of the masses wondering if he’d return. It took a while, but Minnesota got its man, and Risner will presumably slide back into his left guard spot, though Blake Brandel may have something to say about it.

Minnesota also has subtle roster needs at defensive tackle and WR3, so these men would serve as cake toppers of the offseason.

Calais Campbell (DE/DT)

Campbell is 37 and doesn’t have too many seasons left — probably one more. But as Minnesota curiously didn’t make a splash at Campbell’s position during free agency, he’s the last best hope for an impact DT.

Calais Campbell
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Of course, the purple team would have to convince Campbell that it’s primed to compete for the postseason in 2024. That could be a rough sell with Sam Darnold listed as QB1. However, Campbell played for the Atlanta Falcons in 2023, and that franchise was not a contender heading into last year. Perhaps there’s still hope.

Campbell is a cyborg that never ages, drafted the year after Adrian Peterson — if that can be believed — and is still one of the NFL’s best defensive tackles. The probable future Hall of Famer produced an 80.0 Pro Football Focus grade last season — at age 37. He’s a machine. He played 712 defensive snaps for the 2023 Falcons, also known as 63% of the time. That amount would be perfect for Minnesota, a team that signed Jerry Tillery and Jonah Williams at Campbell’s spot as its offseason solutions.

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If not Campbell, the man next to Harrison Phillips on the 2024 defensive line will be Jonathan Bullard, James Lynch, Jaquelin Roy, rookie Levi Drake Rodriguez, or the aforementioned Tillery or Williams. Campbell represents a leaps-and-bounds upgrade.

Hunter Renfrow (WR)

A productive WR3 would strengthen the depth chart, and that’s why Vikings fans have speculated a handful of options since last month’s draft. As the market dwindles, several free agents have flown off the board in the last month.

For now, the Vikings are on deck to showcase a summer camp battle at WR3 between Brandon Powell, Trent Sherfield, and Jalen Nailor. Eight more wideouts, too, will vie for roster spots after Justin Jefferson and Jordan Addison at the top of the ticket.

free agent
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Well, Minnesota should end the WR3 debate with Renfrow, a 28-year-old who most recently played for the Las Vegas Raiders.

The man had 1,038 receiving yards in 2021, which wasn’t terribly long ago. The production has diminished since, but he has that volume gene in his DNA. Conveniently, Renfrow is a free agent, and many wonder why no team has taken the plunge for his services as a WR3 or WR4. General manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah selected zero wide receivers during the draft, even though the event was filled with promising WR3 types.

Otherwise, if Renfrow doesn’t interest the Vikings, a handful of free-agent wideouts are available — like Michael Thomas, Russell Gage, Mecole Hardman, and Randall Cobb, among others. Minnesota could also have quiet plans to promote someone not named Nailor, Powell, or Sherfield. Men like Thayer Thomas, Trishton Jackson, or an undrafted free agent from this year could emerge.

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Yet, Kwesi Adofo-Mensah could make it easy and grab Renfrow.

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,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

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