Potential 2013 Minnesota Vikings roster changes
The 2012 season is over for the Minnesota Vikings, and now we look onto the potential 2013 Minnesota Vikings roster changes. The Vikings will potentially have 17 players saying goodbye this offseason. The number one player the Vikings might lose in 2013 is linebacker Erin Henderson. He should not be confused with E.J. Henderson who is no longer with the team, but Erin Henderson has been a significant part of the Vikings defense since 2011. They’ve been moving him around during 2012, but the Vikings should re-sign him to a long-term contract. Now is not the time for too many changes on the defense, especially with so many other defensive players hitting free agency.
Jasper Brinkley, Solomon Elimimian, Tyrone McKenzie and Marvin Mitchell are linebackers who become free agents in some capacity in 2013. That’s essentially the majority of the middle and left side of the defense potentially gone. Brinkley in particular is just as important as Erin Henderson for what the Vikings want to do in the future with this defense. To make matters worse, he isn’t even a restricted free agent.
Looking at the defensive line it’s probably the end of Kevin Williams’ career on the Vikings. He may re-sign, but the Williams wall doesn’t exist anymore in Minnesota and as such, means fresher talent needs to come.
Starting safety Jamarca Sanford hits free agency in 2013, but he is an unknown. Enough to at least stay away from teams outside the division.
On the offensive line there’s trouble with right tackle Philip Loadholt becoming an unrestricted free agent. Loadholt should expect a long-term contract this offseason, but stranger things have happened in Minnesota over the years.
Wide receiver Jerome Simpson and Devin Aromashodu are both gone in my estimations. They just aren’t as good as their names have portrayed them to be.
Simpson in particular, because his distractions off the field, hasn’t been as dynamic as his play on the field. He’s like a Brandon Jacobs, because his YouTube highlight reels make more of his reputation, than the reality of his talent. Most of the work this offseason will center on retooling the defense in the linebackers and finding a new quarterback. The mere fact Joe Webb was a backup is an indication of how bad the quarterback position on the Vikings is. You’re only as good as you’re second best player and Christian Ponder can use better competition. That may be why he hasn’t been as good as he could be, because the competition for his job is not where it needs to be.
James Cobern is a Featured Journalist for TPF and can be contacted at JCobern@ThePenaltyFlagBlog.com.