Analysis Beyond The Kingdom

The Blank Breakdown: Minnesota Vikings Roster

After missing the playoffs in 2018, the Vikings returned to the playoffs in 2019 after a 10-6 regular season. They would defeat the New Orleans Saints in the Wild Card Round, but fall to the San Francisco 49ers in the Divisional Round.

This offseason has had some questionable decisions, but they had a terrific draft.

Key Additions: EDGE Yannick Ngakoue, DL Michael Pierce, K Dan Bailey, CB Jeff Gladney, CB Cameron Dantzler, WR Justin Jefferson, and WR Tajae Sharpe

Key Departures: DE Everson Griffen, CB Xavier Rhodes, WR Stefon Diggs, DL Linval Joseph, S Andrew Sendejo, CB Trae Waynes, and CB Mackensie Alexander

With the major losses, mainly on defense, let’s dive into the starters for the 2020 Minnesota Vikings.

Offensive Starters:

  • QB: Kirk Cousins
  • RB: Dalvin Cook
  • WR: Adam Thielen
  • WR: Justin Jefferson
  • WR: Bisi Johnson
  • TE: Kyle Rudolph
  • LT: Riley Reiff
  • LG: Dakota Dozier
  • C: Garrett Bradbury
  • RG: Pat Elflein
  • RT: Brian O’Neil

Defensive/ Special Teams Starters:

  • LDE: Danielle Hunter
  • NT: Shamar Stephen
  • DT: Jaleel Johnson
  • RDE: Yannick Ngakoue
  • WLB: Eric Wilson
  • MLB: Eric Kendricks
  • SLB: Anthony Barr
  • CB: Mike Hughes
  • CB: Holton Hill
  • SS: Harrison Smith
  • FS: Anthony Harris
  • K: Dan Bailey
  • P: Britton Colquitt

Strongest Position: Safety

The Vikings have arguable the best safety duo in the NFL. Anthony Harris was tied for the league lead in interceptions with six, along with 11 passes defensed in just 14 games. He was just given the franchise tag, but he has become one of the league’s top tier safeties. Harrison Smith, the five-time Pro Bowler and former All-Pro, has been a staple of the Vikings defense for years and continues to play a hue role with 23 interceptions and 56 passes defensed over his career.

Weakest Position: Cornerback

The cornerback position took some big hits this offseason. The Vikings released former All-Pro, Xavier Rhodes and saw both Mackensie Alexander and Trae Waynes join the Cincinnati Bengals in free agency. The starting roles are now left to Mike Hughes, who only has five career starts, and Hotlon Hill, who only has four career starts. They also have rookies Cam Dantzler and Jeff Gladney, who will get reps. However, the cornerback position is young and will take time to adjust and develop.

After a good 2019 season, the Vikings are looking like they will take step back this year. They lost Stefon Diggs, hurting the wide receiver core, and the defense suffered too many losses to still be a top tier unit. Additionally, Danielle Hunter was just placed on the IR and will miss at least the first three games of the year. I expect the Vikings to be in the mix for a playoff spot, but miss out at the end of the year.

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