Vikings chopping but so far chips are small
It makes you wonder what the Minnesota Vikings have in mind by signing contracts with Matt Cassel, Everson Griffen and Jasper Brinkley.
The team was 5-10-1 last year, gave up the most points in the NFL and fired their head coach. Some would say that indicated the need for some major changes before the 2014 season. So far the most promising changes have been Mike Zimmer and his new coaching staff — and they have not yet won a single game for the Vikings.
Last week's signing of the 31-year-old Cassel gave the Vikings the "bridge" quarterback they feel they need until a younger quarterback can take over. The real winner is Cassel who got himself a $1.3 million raise despite having a quarterback rating of only 81.6 percent — which ranked him 33rd at his position.
The Vikes used to pull rabbits from the helmets regularly when it came to quarterbacks. No-names like Brad Johnson, Wade Wilson and Rich Gannon had big seasons for the Vikes. Gannon was the NFL's MVP in 2002. The Vikes also had success with guys like Warren Moon, Jim McMahon, Randall Cunningham, Brett Favre and Jeff George.
Somewhere along the way they have really lost their touch and they seem to know it. The word last week was the Vikings might be be looking at positions other than quarterback with their top pick in the draft.
Griffen really worked out a good deal for himself as a free agent. Not only he is staying with the team that drafted him, despite two arrests and being tasered by the police, the Vikes are throwing $42.5 million at the guy and giving him a five-year contract. Griffen only has 17.5 sacks to his credit since joining the team.
Brinkley was drafted to back up E.J. Henderson at the middle linebacker spot. He spent last year playing for Arizona but the Cardinals cut him after he made just 27 stops in 15 games.
So with the official free agent market bidding now open how much more will the Vikes do to bolster their roster? How much will they count on April's college draft. How much can they expect from Zimmer and his staff? Stay tuned.