Three days ago, the Indianapolis Colts signed free agent S Tom Zbikowski – who had been with the Baltimore Ravens – to a contract. The move reunited Zbikowski with Chuck Pagano, who was the defensive coordinator in Baltimore but is now the Colts head coach.
That got me to wondering if a similar type of reunion might be a way for the Vikings to address their secondary, too. Former Colts DBs coach Alan Williams is now the Vikings defensive coordinator, and former Colts DB Melvin Bullitt is still an unrestricted free agent. It would be a somewhat ironic turn of events, with Pagano now with the Colts after Williams’ (and much of the rest of the Colts staff under Jim Caldwell) departure and Zbikowski now with the Colts after the release of Bullitt.
But none of that matters, the Vikings have holes to fill in the secondary and a part of the solution could be the addition of Bullitt.
Bullitt stands at 6-1, 201 pounds and will be just 27 years old when the 2012 season begins. He fits the bill of a typical Rick Spielman-type of free agent signing as a guy coming off his rookie contract with an ascending career arc and aspirations for more playing time.
A 5-year veteran out of Texas A&M, Bullitt has a background that Vikings Head Coach Leslie Frazier will appreciate, entering the NFL as an undrafted free agent with the Colts in 2007 and finding a niche on the roster until he finally earned a starting role. It’s a similar career path to Frazier’s with the Bears in the 1980s.
Bullitt was a standout specials teams player and a special teams captain with the Colts, but he also developed into a regular contributor on defense, starting 21 games in the 2008 and 2009 seasons. He has nearly 200 tackles, 13 passes defensed, 7 INTs and 2 forced fumbles in 50 games played. Injuries have limited his playing time the past two seasons, though, and now he’s looking to bounce back with a new team.
Will the Vikings be that team? Only time will tell. To my knowledge the Vikings haven’t expressed interest in Bullitt, but that doesn’t mean something won’t materialize over the next couple weeks or so. It’s just a name to watch this offseason.
Tags: Alan Williams, Leslie Frazier
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