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  1. #1
    aaeyers's Avatar
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    aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    Players Leaving

    Dontarrious Thomas (free agency)
    Mewelde Moore (free agency)
    Dwight Smith (trade for a 5th round pick)
    Erasmus James (trade for 2009 pick or cut)
    Troy Williamson (trade for 2009 pick or cut)

    Kelly Holcomb (cut)
    Brooks Bollinger (cut)
    Tank Williams (cut)
    Darrion Scott (cut)
    Naufahu Tahi (cut)
    Ronyell Whitaker (cut)


    Free Agency

    With Sidney Rice emerging as a potential future star, Bobby Wade being very productive, Ferguson making catches when called upon, and Allison showing some flashes of potential, we are merely one receiver short of having a very serviceable receiving core. We need someone who can start opposite of Rice, someone who has the speed to stretch the defense, the hands to catch all the tough balls, and the quickness to get open consistently. There aren't any really big name receivers who look to be available this offseason, but there are a few quality receivers. My first choice would be Bernard Berrian.

    In Chicago, he has been a good deep threat for them starting across from Mushin Muhammad. He would be perfect in that exact same role here in Minnesota, starting across from Rice. In the last two years in Chicago, he has started to emerge as one of their few weapons on offense, showing great quickness and deep speed, as well as pretty good hands. It would be great to steal a player like Berrian from a division rival, and I think he would love the opportunity to play in an offense that would give him many single coverages due to the opposing defenses focus on stopping the run. I think between Rice, Berrian and Wade, we would have more than enough talent to take advantage of any defense that tries to stack 8 or 9 men in the box against our running game.

    The only other options we would be looking at would be to trade for someone like Javon Walker or Donte Stallworth, but it is always better to get someone without having to give up other players or draft picks. And it is my opinion that Berrian would be a better fit on our team than either of them (not to mention we would be stealing a key playmaker from a division rival).

    Sign Bernard Berrian (5 years)

    Whether some of us like it or not, Tarvaris Jackson will be the quarterback for the Vikings next year. I personally think that with a whole offseason to look back on this year and continue to improve, along with any additions to the offense in the offseason, that Jackson will be a very good quarterback. He showed a lot of improvement this season, and we should start seeing him take his game to the next level next year.

    However, there is always a risk in starting a young quarterback, something that we became painfully aware of this year. The Vikings desperately need to bring in some insurance at the position, in case Jackson ends up not working out. One of our main needs this offseason has to be a quality veteran quarterback to mentor and back up Jackson. And the only person who I can foresee that will be available at a reasonable price would be Chad Pennington. Due to Kellen Clemens being named the starter for the Jets, and Pennington's large upcoming bonus and cap hit for next year, I believe the Jets will have no choice but to release him if he is unwilling to yet again restruccter his contract. Although I personally don't like him as a quarterback, he is the only answer I can see. He is a good quarterback; someone who can hep Tarvaris continue to improve, as well as stepping in as a starter should Jackson get injured.

    And if it turns out that Jackson just isn't cut out for the job, Pennington is more than capable to take over for a season or two while we groom someone new. Overall, we need depth, experience and insurance at the quarterback position, and thats something that Pennington would provide us.

    Sign Chad Pennington (3 years)


    Draft

    1. Quentin Groves - DE Auburn (6-4 , 254)
    Although our secondary deserves a share of the blame concerning our porous pass defense, our biggest problem on defense has to be our pass rush. Groves is an absolute stud, and that is something we have been lacking on the edge for quite some time. Although personally I don't like the idea of drafting another end in the first round, but its what we need, and at the 17th pick, Groves would be one of the best players available. With Udeze finally emerging on the left side, I think we could finally have a set of ends who could bring this defense to the next level.

    (It seems to me that the spot for 3rd DE in the draft behind Long and Gholston seems to be a toss-up between Groves and Harvey. For the moment I prefer Groves, because while Groves and Harvey are nearly the exact same size, Groves is much faster. Also, Harvey was completely shut down in Florida's bowl game against Michigan.)

    2. Craig Steltz - SS LSU (6-2 , 204)
    With Dwight Smith unable to stay out of trouble, we find ourselves in need of a new FS, and Steltz would be the perfect fit for our system. Steltz is a big, hard hitting safety, something we have been lacking in Minnesota for quite some time. He is also very smart, and has great speed, allowing him to make plays all over the field. He could learn a lot playing with Sharper, and I think he could make an immediate impact in the secondary. Drafting a true SS would also allow Sharper to move back to his natural FS position.

    3. Dajuan Morgan - FS N.C. State (6-1 , 203)
    Running a 4.44 forty at 6'1" 203, Dajuan Morgan has all the athletic ability needed to be a star in our secondary. He also has a nose for the ball, accumulating 117 tackles this year and broke up 13 passes, both leading N.C. State. He is a junior, and has been working out all offseason at API to prepare for the coming NFL season. He would be the perfect replacement for when Darren Sharper retires. Along with Steltz, we could have a very nasty, young set of safeties for many years to come.

    3. *Trade 3rd and 7th round picks for 4th round pick and 2009 3rd round pick

    4. Doug Legursky - C Marshall (6-3 , 311)
    This kid is a rock. He has started every single game of his career, never missing a game. Matt Birk is also getting towards the end of his career, and I think Legursky could be the next great Vikings center. The last kid we drafted from Marshall turned out to be sort of good, so why not go back there.

    4. Kevin O'Connell - QB San Diego St. (6-6 , 228)
    O'Connell has all the tools you look for when drafting a QB; he has great size, arm strength and mobility (4.59). He needs some coaching to improve his technique, but he isn't going to be asked to start right away. He would be a great third string QB and a project for Childress. With the right coaching he could become a very good QB in this league. He led his team in rushing yards (408) and rushing touchdowns (11). He also threw for 3,063 yards and 15 scores.

    5. Nelson Coleman - MLB Tulsa (6-3 , 235)
    With Thomas leaving in free agency, we need depth at linebacker, and Coleman has the size and speed needed to play middle linebacker in the NFL, and in the last 2 seasons at Tulsa he has registered 208 tackles.

    5. Nile Legania - CB/KR Wayne State (5-10 , 185)
    On his career Legania had 103 tackles, 32 pass breakups, and six interceptions, and is one of the top corners in Divison-II, but his main contribution to the Vikings would be as a kick returner. One of the fastest players in the draft, Legania averages around a 4.28 forty, and has been recorded at 4.26. Every thing about him reminds me of Devin Hester, and there is no doubt he could make an immediate impact on our special teams.

    7. Lance Ball - RB Maryland (5-9 , 225)
    Like Coleman, Ball is a depth pick because of Mewelde Moore leaving in free agency. With Peterson and Taylor, we don't need a superstar to back them up, so a seventh round pick is adequate. Ball however is still a great player, very similar to Moore, and would be a good third string back for us. He runs a low 4.4 forty, and could also be a possible kick returner.


    2008 Depth Chart

    QB: Tarvaris Jackson, Chad Pennington, Kevin O'Connell
    RB: Adrian Peterson, Chester Taylor, Lance Ball
    FB: Tony Richardson, Jeff Dugan
    TE: Visanthe Shiancoe, Jim Kleinsasser, Garrett Mills
    WR: Bernard Berrian, Bobby Wade, Aundrae Allison
    WR: Sidney Rice, Robert Ferguson
    LT: Bryant McKinnie, Chase Johnson
    LG: Steve Hutchingson, Doug Legursky
    C: Matt Birk, Doug Legursky
    RG: Anthony Herrera, Artis Hicks
    RT: Ryan Cook, Marcus Johnson

    LE: Kenechi Udeze, Brian Robison, Jayme Mitchell
    NT: Pat Williams, Fred Evans
    UT: Kevin Williams, Spencer Johnson
    RE: Quentin Groves, Ray Edwards, Brian Robison
    LOLB: Ben Leber, Rufus Alexander, Vinny Ciurciu
    MLB: E.J. Henderson, Nelson Coleman
    ROLB: Chad Greenway, Heath Farwell
    CB: Antoine Winfield, Marcus McCauley
    CB: Cedric Griffin, Charles Gordon, Nile Legania
    FS: Darren Sharper, Dajuan Morgan
    SS: Craig Steltz, Mike Doss

    K: Ryan Longwell
    P: Chris Kluwe
    KR: Nile Legania, Aundrae Allison
    PR: Nile Legania, Bobby Wade


    Final Notes

    Our biggest needs this offseason are a starting receiver, a pass rushing defensive end, a veteran quarterback, a couple of young safeties, a kick returner, a young center, and depth to replace players leaving in free agency. I think with this offseason all those needs were addressed in the most efficient way possible. One of my main goals with this mock was to build a team that would both be effective in 2008, but would also be built looking towards the future by drafting young players who will come in when certain starters retire (as well as acquiring addition 2009 draft picks). Thank you for reading, and all comments are appreciated.

  2. #2
    Marrdro's Avatar
    Marrdro is offline Beware My Spreadsheet, Bitches!
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    Re: aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    Overall I like how you addressed the areas of need but have a few comments/questions:

    a.
    Doug Legursky - What do you do with Mozes?
    b.
    Spencer Johnson - So you are going to resign (at a high price by the way) a undersized DT that doesn't fit the 3 gap scheme?
    I for one think you let him go, use the CAP dollars somplace else and draft a guy to replace him.
    c.
    Darrion Scott - Not alot of discussion on him, however I agree, let him go as well to open another roster spot.
    d.
    Naufahu Tahi - I am not so sure I would get rid of this guy.
    Nothing solid to put on it but I think he is gonna be a work horse for us.
    e.
    Javon Walker or Donte Stallworth are not the only options IMHO if they don't sign Berrian.
    Hackett also fits in the version of the WCO we run.
    f.
    Chad Pennington.
    Although you put out a good arguement for him, I believe that his arm strength is a question when it comes to making some of the throws necessary for this version of the WCO.
    Accuracy is one thing but getting the ball out on a rope in the traffic patterns these guys run routes in is very important.
    A weak throw will be tipped/picked in an instant.

    Again, a well thought out approach that is well packaged.
    Long story short, I like it.
    ;D
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  3. #3
    aaeyers's Avatar
    aaeyers is offline Pro-Bowler
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    Re: aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    "Marrdro" wrote:
    Overall I like how you addressed the areas of need but have a few comments/questions:

    a.
    Doug Legursky - What do you do with Mozes?
    b.
    Spencer Johnson - So you are going to resign (at a high price by the way) a undersized DT that doesn't fit the 3 gap scheme?
    I for one think you let him go, use the CAP dollars somplace else and draft a guy to replace him.
    c.
    Darrion Scott - Not alot of discussion on him, however I agree, let him go as well to open another roster spot.
    d.
    Naufahu Tahi - I am not so sure I would get rid of this guy.
    Nothing solid to put on it but I think he is gonna be a work horse for us.
    e.
    Javon Walker or Donte Stallworth are not the only options IMHO if they don't sign Berrian.
    Hackett also fits in the version of the WCO we run.
    f.
    Chad Pennington.
    Although you put out a good arguement for him, I believe that his arm strength is a question when it comes to making some of the throws necessary for this version of the WCO.
    Accuracy is one thing but getting the ball out on a rope in the traffic patterns these guys run routes in is very important.
    A weak throw will be tipped/picked in an instant.

    Again, a well thought out approach that is well packaged.
    Long story short, I like it.

    ;D
    Thanks for the comments, the words of Marrdro are always valued.
    ;D

    a. I was not aware Mozes was on the team. Wikipedia says that Mozes was waived by the Vikings on August 8, 2007 after being places on the injured reserve.

    b. I think the Vikings should resign Johnson, he has been fairly effective when called upon, but I don't think he has done enough to warrant a big payday. He is a good player, but he only has 4 sacks in his career, would another team shell out big money for that? I'll admit that I don't know anything about detailed defensive line positions, but is 283 pounds undersized?

    d. I've just never seen anything out of Tahi that would show he is worth a roster spot. We already have Richardson, as well as Dugan and Kleinsasser who have both played FB. It just doesn't seem like we need another FB.

    e. I know there are other options, but in my opinion Hackett, Wilford, Bryant Johnson, etc. just aren't the same caliber player as Berrian. They just don't seem to be legitimate number one receivers to me, and that is what we need.

    f. I agree. I feel the same way, but if he is cut, I think he would be the best free agent quarterback. Despite his arm strength, he has shown in the past that he can be a winning quarterback. He has experience, and makes very good decisions, and those are two things that we really need. He would be a great mentor for Jackson.

  4. #4
    Marrdro's Avatar
    Marrdro is offline Beware My Spreadsheet, Bitches!
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    Re: aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    "aaeyers" wrote:
    "Marrdro" wrote:
    Overall I like how you addressed the areas of need but have a few comments/questions:

    a.
    Doug Legursky - What do you do with Mozes?
    b.
    Spencer Johnson - So you are going to resign (at a high price by the way) a undersized DT that doesn't fit the 3 gap scheme?
    I for one think you let him go, use the CAP dollars somplace else and draft a guy to replace him.
    c.
    Darrion Scott - Not alot of discussion on him, however I agree, let him go as well to open another roster spot.
    d.
    Naufahu Tahi - I am not so sure I would get rid of this guy.
    Nothing solid to put on it but I think he is gonna be a work horse for us.
    e.
    Javon Walker or Donte Stallworth are not the only options IMHO if they don't sign Berrian.
    Hackett also fits in the version of the WCO we run.
    f.
    Chad Pennington.
    Although you put out a good arguement for him, I believe that his arm strength is a question when it comes to making some of the throws necessary for this version of the WCO.
    Accuracy is one thing but getting the ball out on a rope in the traffic patterns these guys run routes in is very important.
    A weak throw will be tipped/picked in an instant.

    Again, a well thought out approach that is well packaged.
    Long story short, I like it.

    ;D
    Thanks for the comments, the words of Marrdro are always valued.
    ;D

    a. I was not aware Mozes was on the team. Wikipedia says that Mozes was waived by the Vikings on August 8, 2007 after being places on the injured reserve.

    b. I think the Vikings should resign Johnson, he has been fairly effective when called upon, but I don't think he has done enough to warrant a big payday. He is a good player, but he only has 4 sacks in his career, would another team shell out big money for that? I'll admit that I don't know anything about detailed defensive line positions, but is 283 pounds undersized?

    d. I've just never seen anything out of Tahi that would show he is worth a roster spot. We already have Richardson, as well as Dugan and Kleinsasser who have both played FB. It just doesn't seem like we need another FB.

    e. I know there are other options, but in my opinion Hackett, Wilford, Bryant Johnson, etc. just aren't the same caliber player as Berrian. They just don't seem to be legitimate number one receivers to me, and that is what we need.

    f. I agree. I feel the same way, but if he is cut, I think he would be the best free agent quarterback. Despite his arm strength, he has shown in the past that he can be a winning quarterback. He has experience, and makes very good decisions, and those are two things that we really need. He would be a great mentor for Jackson.
    Not sure they are of that much value but thanks none the less.
    ;D

    a.
    I listened to Dan talk on Sirius radio (Paul Allen was the Interviewer) a few weeks ago and it sure sounded like he was looking forward to the next season.

    b.
    Spencer will garner alot of looks from teams that don't run a 3 gap technique.
    In fact some of the 3-4 teams would love him to play either DE.
    Suffice it to say, its a hunch, the Vikes won't offer him what he will get on the market.

    d.
    You can never have enough FB's in this offense.
    Especially ones that can block and catch the ball out of the backfield.
    I don't think T-rich fits the later part of the that description.
    As for Tahi I am not sure about him either.
    Again a gut feeling he will come back and be a workhorse for us.

    f.
    I will give in as you are probably correct with your statement that there aren't alot out there that can come in.
    FA QB market is gonna have some slim pickens in it this year.
    Heck we might just see the following next year at that position:

    a.
    TJ (Starter)
    b.
    KH or BB (Best Camp)
    c.
    Rookie drafted this year.
    Many many thanks to my talented friend Jos for the new Sig.http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v343/josdin00/Vikings/Marrdro_sig.jpg

  5. #5
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    Re: aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    Draft

    1. Quentin Groves - DE Auburn (6-4 , 254)
    Although our secondary deserves a share of the blame concerning our porous pass defense, our biggest problem on defense has to be our pass rush. Groves is an absolute stud, and that is something we have been lacking on the edge for quite some time. Although personally I don't like the idea of drafting another end in the first round, but its what we need, and at the 17th pick, Groves would be one of the best players available. With Udeze finally emerging on the left side, I think we could finally have a set of ends who could bring this defense to the next level.

    (It seems to me that the spot for 3rd DE in the draft behind Long and Gholston seems to be a toss-up between Groves and Harvey. For the moment I prefer Groves, because while Groves and Harvey are nearly the exact same size, Groves is much faster. Also, Harvey was completely shut down in Florida's bowl game against Michigan.)

    2. Craig Steltz - SS LSU (6-2 , 204)
    With Dwight Smith unable to stay out of trouble, we find ourselves in need of a new FS, and Steltz would be the perfect fit for our system. Steltz is a big, hard hitting safety, something we have been lacking in Minnesota for quite some time. He is also very smart, and has great speed, allowing him to make plays all over the field. He could learn a lot playing with Sharper, and I think he could make an immediate impact in the secondary. Drafting a true SS would also allow Sharper to move back to his natural FS position.

    3. Dajuan Morgan - FS N.C. State (6-1 , 203)
    Running a 4.44 forty at 6'1" 203, Dajuan Morgan has all the athletic ability needed to be a star in our secondary. He also has a nose for the ball, accumulating 117 tackles this year and broke up 13 passes, both leading N.C. State. He is a junior, and has been working out all offseason at API to prepare for the coming NFL season. He would be the perfect replacement for when Darren Sharper retires. Along with Steltz, we could have a very nasty, young set of safeties for many years to come.

    3. *Trade 3rd and 7th round picks for 4th round pick and 2009 3rd round pick

    4. Doug Legursky - C Marshall (6-3 , 311)
    This kid is a rock. He has started every single game of his career, never missing a game. Matt Birk is also getting towards the end of his career, and I think Legursky could be the next great Vikings center. The last kid we drafted from Marshall turned out to be sort of good, so why not go back there.

    4. Kevin O'Connell - QB San Diego St. (6-6 , 228)
    O'Connell has all the tools you look for when drafting a QB; he has great size, arm strength and mobility (4.59). He needs some coaching to improve his technique, but he isn't going to be asked to start right away. He would be a great third string QB and a project for Childress. With the right coaching he could become a very good QB in this league. He led his team in rushing yards (408) and rushing touchdowns (11). He also threw for 3,063 yards and 15 scores.

    5. Nelson Coleman - MLB Tulsa (6-3 , 235)
    With Thomas leaving in free agency, we need depth at linebacker, and Coleman has the size and speed needed to play middle linebacker in the NFL, and in the last 2 seasons at Tulsa he has registered 208 tackles.

    5. Nile Legania - CB/KR Wayne State (5-10 , 185)
    On his career Legania had 103 tackles, 32 pass breakups, and six interceptions, and is one of the top corners in Divison-II, but his main contribution to the Vikings would be as a kick returner. One of the fastest players in the draft, Legania averages around a 4.28 forty, and has been recorded at 4.26. Every thing about him reminds me of Devin Hester, and there is no doubt he could make an immediate impact on our special teams.

    7. Lance Ball - RB Maryland (5-9 , 225)
    Like Coleman, Ball is a depth pick because of Mewelde Moore leaving in free agency. With Peterson and Taylor, we don't need a superstar to back them up, so a seventh round pick is adequate. Ball however is still a great player, very similar to Moore, and would be a good third string back for us. He runs a low 4.4 forty, and could also be a possible kick returner.
    [/quote]
    An alright mock draft but ive seen better. I would rather see us getting Reggie Smith in the 1st

  6. #6
    mountainviking's Avatar
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    Re: aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    Nice Work!
    You might have to switch the safeties' rounds, but getting both of those guys would certainly look to set that position up for the future!
    Pennington is not the answer, but may be a good sideline presence...he does have experience.
    Berrian might be a good fit with Rice and the rest of our guys all getting their share of the spread out offense.

    I'm not quite convinced that DE value is going to be there for us in the first...but some consistent pass rush would be nice!
    Control the line, control the time, and give your D a chance to shine!!

    "Balance it on end and thats the third side of the coin!!" -wookiefoot

  7. #7
    ajoyce is offline Training Camp
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    Re: aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    I agree with some of what you say.
    We have seen what Berrian can do over the pst few years.
    He would be an excellent signing.
    I would prefer Calais Campbell over Groves.
    He is an absolute beast.
    I also feel like DT still has not shown his true potential and value yet.
    I would like to see him back next year.
    You have not mentioned an upgrade on the right side of the OL.
    I think it was good at times last year but with a key addition we can have something special.
    TJ will be our starter at the open of the season.
    McNabb and Anderson cost too much.
    Should be a fun offseason.

  8. #8
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    Re: aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    I think Tahi has become a coaches favorite and although he may not appear to be much, he seems well liked and does what is asked of him...

    Reminds me of Kleinsasser back in the day in a way (not how he plays, rather how he seems to be slotted)


    Trust me, I'm a doctor.

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  9. #9
    dcboardr41 is offline Team Alumni
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    Re: aaeyers' Offseason (Pre-Combine Edition)

    "aaeyers" wrote:
    Players Leaving

    Dontarrious Thomas (free agency)
    Mewelde Moore (free agency)
    Dwight Smith (trade for a 5th round pick)
    Erasmus James (trade for 2009 pick or cut)
    Troy Williamson (trade for 2009 pick or cut)

    Kelly Holcomb (cut)
    Brooks Bollinger (cut)
    Tank Williams (cut)
    Darrion Scott (cut)
    Naufahu Tahi (cut)
    Ronyell Whitaker (cut)


    Free Agency

    With Sidney Rice emerging as a potential future star, Bobby Wade being very productive, Ferguson making catches when called upon, and Allison showing some flashes of potential, we are merely one receiver short of having a very serviceable receiving core. We need someone who can start opposite of Rice, someone who has the speed to stretch the defense, the hands to catch all the tough balls, and the quickness to get open consistently. There aren't any really big name receivers who look to be available this offseason, but there are a few quality receivers. My first choice would be Bernard Berrian.

    In Chicago, he has been a good deep threat for them starting across from Mushin Muhammad. He would be perfect in that exact same role here in Minnesota, starting across from Rice. In the last two years in Chicago, he has started to emerge as one of their few weapons on offense, showing great quickness and deep speed, as well as pretty good hands. It would be great to steal a player like Berrian from a division rival, and I think he would love the opportunity to play in an offense that would give him many single coverages due to the opposing defenses focus on stopping the run. I think between Rice, Berrian and Wade, we would have more than enough talent to take advantage of any defense that tries to stack 8 or 9 men in the box against our running game.

    The only other options we would be looking at would be to trade for someone like Javon Walker or Donte Stallworth, but it is always better to get someone without having to give up other players or draft picks. And it is my opinion that Berrian would be a better fit on our team than either of them (not to mention we would be stealing a key playmaker from a division rival).

    Sign Bernard Berrian (5 years)

    Whether some of us like it or not, Tarvaris Jackson will be the quarterback for the Vikings next year. I personally think that with a whole offseason to look back on this year and continue to improve, along with any additions to the offense in the offseason, that Jackson will be a very good quarterback. He showed a lot of improvement this season, and we should start seeing him take his game to the next level next year.

    However, there is always a risk in starting a young quarterback, something that we became painfully aware of this year. The Vikings desperately need to bring in some insurance at the position, in case Jackson ends up not working out. One of our main needs this offseason has to be a quality veteran quarterback to mentor and back up Jackson. And the only person who I can foresee that will be available at a reasonable price would be Chad Pennington. Due to Kellen Clemens being named the starter for the Jets, and Pennington's large upcoming bonus and cap hit for next year, I believe the Jets will have no choice but to release him if he is unwilling to yet again restruccter his contract. Although I personally don't like him as a quarterback, he is the only answer I can see. He is a good quarterback; someone who can hep Tarvaris continue to improve, as well as stepping in as a starter should Jackson get injured.

    And if it turns out that Jackson just isn't cut out for the job, Pennington is more than capable to take over for a season or two while we groom someone new. Overall, we need depth, experience and insurance at the quarterback position, and thats something that Pennington would provide us.

    Sign Chad Pennington (3 years)


    Draft

    1. Quentin Groves - DE Auburn (6-4 , 254)
    Although our secondary deserves a share of the blame concerning our porous pass defense, our biggest problem on defense has to be our pass rush. Groves is an absolute stud, and that is something we have been lacking on the edge for quite some time. Although personally I don't like the idea of drafting another end in the first round, but its what we need, and at the 17th pick, Groves would be one of the best players available. With Udeze finally emerging on the left side, I think we could finally have a set of ends who could bring this defense to the next level.

    (It seems to me that the spot for 3rd DE in the draft behind Long and Gholston seems to be a toss-up between Groves and Harvey. For the moment I prefer Groves, because while Groves and Harvey are nearly the exact same size, Groves is much faster. Also, Harvey was completely shut down in Florida's bowl game against Michigan.)

    2. Craig Steltz - SS LSU (6-2 , 204)
    With Dwight Smith unable to stay out of trouble, we find ourselves in need of a new FS, and Steltz would be the perfect fit for our system. Steltz is a big, hard hitting safety, something we have been lacking in Minnesota for quite some time. He is also very smart, and has great speed, allowing him to make plays all over the field. He could learn a lot playing with Sharper, and I think he could make an immediate impact in the secondary. Drafting a true SS would also allow Sharper to move back to his natural FS position.

    3. Dajuan Morgan - FS N.C. State (6-1 , 203)
    Running a 4.44 forty at 6'1" 203, Dajuan Morgan has all the athletic ability needed to be a star in our secondary. He also has a nose for the ball, accumulating 117 tackles this year and broke up 13 passes, both leading N.C. State. He is a junior, and has been working out all offseason at API to prepare for the coming NFL season. He would be the perfect replacement for when Darren Sharper retires. Along with Steltz, we could have a very nasty, young set of safeties for many years to come.

    3. *Trade 3rd and 7th round picks for 4th round pick and 2009 3rd round pick

    4. Doug Legursky - C Marshall (6-3 , 311)
    This kid is a rock. He has started every single game of his career, never missing a game. Matt Birk is also getting towards the end of his career, and I think Legursky could be the next great Vikings center. The last kid we drafted from Marshall turned out to be sort of good, so why not go back there.

    4. Kevin O'Connell - QB San Diego St. (6-6 , 228)
    O'Connell has all the tools you look for when drafting a QB; he has great size, arm strength and mobility (4.59). He needs some coaching to improve his technique, but he isn't going to be asked to start right away. He would be a great third string QB and a project for Childress. With the right coaching he could become a very good QB in this league. He led his team in rushing yards (408) and rushing touchdowns (11). He also threw for 3,063 yards and 15 scores.

    5. Nelson Coleman - MLB Tulsa (6-3 , 235)
    With Thomas leaving in free agency, we need depth at linebacker, and Coleman has the size and speed needed to play middle linebacker in the NFL, and in the last 2 seasons at Tulsa he has registered 208 tackles.

    5. Nile Legania - CB/KR Wayne State (5-10 , 185)
    On his career Legania had 103 tackles, 32 pass breakups, and six interceptions, and is one of the top corners in Divison-II, but his main contribution to the Vikings would be as a kick returner. One of the fastest players in the draft, Legania averages around a 4.28 forty, and has been recorded at 4.26. Every thing about him reminds me of Devin Hester, and there is no doubt he could make an immediate impact on our special teams.

    7. Lance Ball - RB Maryland (5-9 , 225)
    Like Coleman, Ball is a depth pick because of Mewelde Moore leaving in free agency. With Peterson and Taylor, we don't need a superstar to back them up, so a seventh round pick is adequate. Ball however is still a great player, very similar to Moore, and would be a good third string back for us. He runs a low 4.4 forty, and could also be a possible kick returner.


    2008 Depth Chart

    QB: Tarvaris Jackson, Chad Pennington, Kevin O'Connell
    RB: Adrian Peterson, Chester Taylor, Lance Ball
    FB: Tony Richardson, Jeff Dugan
    TE: Visanthe Shiancoe, Jim Kleinsasser, Garrett Mills
    WR: Bernard Berrian, Bobby Wade, Aundrae Allison
    WR: Sidney Rice, Robert Ferguson
    LT: Bryant McKinnie, Chase Johnson
    LG: Steve Hutchingson, Doug Legursky
    C: Matt Birk, Doug Legursky
    RG: Anthony Herrera, Artis Hicks
    RT: Ryan Cook, Marcus Johnson

    LE: Kenechi Udeze, Brian Robison, Jayme Mitchell
    NT: Pat Williams, Fred Evans
    UT: Kevin Williams, Spencer Johnson
    RE: Quentin Groves, Ray Edwards, Brian Robison
    LOLB: Ben Leber, Rufus Alexander, Vinny Ciurciu
    MLB: E.J. Henderson, Nelson Coleman
    ROLB: Chad Greenway, Heath Farwell
    CB: Antoine Winfield, Marcus McCauley
    CB: Cedric Griffin, Charles Gordon, Nile Legania
    FS: Darren Sharper, Dajuan Morgan
    SS: Craig Steltz, Mike Doss

    K: Ryan Longwell
    P: Chris Kluwe
    KR: Nile Legania, Aundrae Allison
    PR: Nile Legania, Bobby Wade


    Final Notes

    Our biggest needs this offseason are a starting receiver, a pass rushing defensive end, a veteran quarterback, a couple of young safeties, a kick returner, a young center, and depth to replace players leaving in free agency. I think with this offseason all those needs were addressed in the most efficient way possible. One of my main goals with this mock was to build a team that would both be effective in 2008, but would also be built looking towards the future by drafting young players who will come in when certain starters retire (as well as acquiring addition 2009 draft picks). Thank you for reading, and all comments are appreciated.
    *there is no way we are gonna trade james, no one will take him, and plus hes still injured
    *signing berrian i like, ill take the other top 5 wr's either, walker, berrian, b.johnson, stallworth or hackett
    *pennington is not leaving NYJ, so thats a no no
    *from what i have read about groves, he sounds like a suggs kinda hybrid DE/OLB, i would like to get him, but i dunno if they are gonna go DE in 1st rd again
    *steltz is a nice pick there, but for all the others its way to soon to think bout that lol
    *t-will gettin cut i love, but doubt it will happen
    * i would like to resign tank, hes a good backup
    * one think id like to add is if we would go after one of the big name corners out there, we have winfield and 2 young corners who look like they have good potential, but in our division we need as many corners as we can get, and we have the cap to do it

    Pissing on the Pack since 08'

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