Free agency has taken the attention away from the NFL draft for now, with much of the free agency discussion focusing on the unrestricted free agency market. Which players would fit best with which teams? Will certain teams be major players in free agency?
But before those questions can be answered, NFL teams must first take care of their in-house business. In other words, they must look at players on their own team who are scheduled to be free agents. Once they’ve decided which players they’ll welcome back and which players they’ll let walk, then teams can begin formulating their unrestricted free agency plan.
Now that we’re only hours away from free agency beginning (Tuesday, March 13 at 3:00 PM CT), you can be sure that most teams have made decisions on which players they’ll re-sign and which players they’ll let hit the open market. Consequently, they also have an idea of which free agents they’ll pursue once free agency begins. Let’s also keep in mind that the players also have some power in this process because they may choose to leave their current team for greener pastures in another NFL city.
But the rest of us are not privy to that information, so we’re left to guess what will happen. For the purposes of that discussion, I will list the Vikings restricted and unrestricted free agents below (along with a comment about each player), and leave it up to the readers to decide which players they’d like to see back with the Vikings in 2012. Let us know what you think by leaving your thoughts in the comments section below this entry.
Scheduled restricted free agents (2)
RB Lorenzo Booker – Has been team’s RB3 and also has return/special teams ability
LB Kenny Onatolu – Has been valuable special teams contributor, but will have to battle for roster spot
Scheduled unrestricted free agents (16)
S Husain Abdullah – Has been starting safety past two seasons and could be back to compete for starting spot in 2012
LB Xavier Adibi – Added during the 2012 season but wasn’t asked to contribute much
WR Devin Aromashodu – Seems like untapped potential, but will Vikings try another option in 2012?
WR Greg Camarillo – Great locker room influence, reliable veteran, has special teams ability
DT Fred Evans – Rotational player
DT Letroy Guion – Also a rotational player, but is young enough that could develop into starter
LB E.J. Henderson – Important part of Vikings organization since being drafted in 2003; defensive leader
LB Erin Henderson – Starter at OLB last season, developed from undrafted player to starter
S Tyrell Johnson – Has had disappointing run since being drafted in 2008; very athletic
LS Matt Katula – Signed to fill in for Cullen Loeffler after he was injured during 2011 season
TE Jim Kleinsasser – Venerable Viking retired after outstanding career
OL Scott Kooistra – Injured during preseason and placed on IR
S Jarrad Page – Signed late in 2011 and tried out for LA Dodgers this Spring
QB Sage Rosenfels – Was 3rd QB for some of 2011 and would be a good option as backup in 2012
CB Benny Sapp – Veteran CB who can contribute in some role
TE Visanthe Shiancoe – Had down 2011 season and will be a top option among TEs in free agency
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 161 Comments »