Thursday, May 16, 2013

Finally a Decent Group of Receivers

Heading in to this offseason, the Vikings faced a number of decisions needed to fill big holes. None was bigger than what to do at wide receiver for the team.

Gone are Michael Jenkins and Devin Aromashodu. Jerome Simpson was re-signed to a one year deal. Jarius Wright showed flashes in his brief time playing in 2012.

The decision then became, what to do with super star receiver/returner/running back, Percy Harvin. Harvin was drafted in 2009 by the Vikings in the First Round (#22). Harvin is a playmaker, but a headache. No pun intended. Harvin suffered from migraines that kept him out of practices and games. Harvin wanted a huge deal this off-season (with one year left on his rookie deal).

Last year Harvin missed seven games due to an ankle injury that was never really explained. Harvin seemed more interested in his pay day versus helping the team win. Despite Harvin’s injury and missing games, the Vikes had a great end to the season and even made the NFL Playoffs.

Harvin was traded to the Seattle Seahawks for a First Round pick and Seventh Round pick in 2013 and a Third Round pick in 2014. It was a pretty handsome reward for a player who for whatever reason clearly wanted out of Minnesota.

With Harvin gone, the Vikes BADLY needed receivers. They solved that by signing former Packer wide receiver, Greg Jennings. Jennings was a Second Round pick by the Pack in 2006. In his seven seasons with Green Bay he totaled 425 receptions for 6,537 yards including 53 touchdowns.

Jennings has been a long time Viking killer and is just the veteran the Vikings need to reassemble their receiving core. Jennings missed half of last season (eight games) with a groin injury. Minnesota signed him to a five-year, $47.5 million deal that included $18 million guaranteed.

In addition to adding Jennings, the Vikes traded some second day picks to move back up into the First Round of the NFL Draft last month to select Cordarrelle Patterson, wide receiver from Tennessee.

Patterson, nicknamed CP, played two years at a JUCO and then played his 2012 season at Tennessee. While at Tennessee he was a receiver, punt returner and running back. He had nine touchdowns last year (three rushing, five receiving and one returning).

CP is almost a Randy Moss and Percy Harvin combo. He is 6 ft 1 inches tall and runs a 4.42 40 yard dash. He will be wearing number 84 for Minnesota and he grew up with Moss as his idol. He is a playmaker with a little bit of attitude that could use some polishing of his route running, but he may be a star. Personally he is one of the guys I am excited to take in fantasy football too!

With Jennings, Patterson, Simpson, Wright and the possibility of players like Greg Childs and Stephen Burton contributing, Minnesota now actually has a decent group of receivers for quarterback, Christian Ponder to throw to.

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