The free agent market is now flooded with former Giants. Over the last couple days, the 2011 Super Bowl champs dumped RB Ahmad Bradshaw, LB Michael Boley and DT Chris Canty. The roster purge is reminiscent of what the Vikings went through this time last year, dumping veterans Steve Hutchinson, Cedric Griffin, Remi Ayodele and Anthony Herrera. After the draft the Vikings also cut kicker Ryan Longwell in what was at the time a surprise move (no complaints after the way Blair Walsh performed in 2012).
This means more vets being dumped into the bargain bin. We know how Rick Spielman enjoys checking out the bargain bin. He’s like me digging through the 5-dollar DVDs at Walmart. Wow, Funny Farm with Chevy Chase!
So would Spielman be interested in any of the guys let go by the Giants? Ahmad Bradshaw, no. The Vikes are not in the market for a totally washed-up veteran running back. The other two guys warrant at least a little closer look.
First Michael Boley. If this was 2009, I’d be excited about the potential of adding Boley. At that time Boley had a reputation as a playmaking linebacker with great athletic gifts, a guy who could blitz and also cover, and was good at forcing turnovers. Now Boley is seen as a bit of a broken-down, overrated guy. Hey, that makes him perfect for bargain-shopping Spielman!
Maybe. It depends on what the plan is with linebacker. I think everyone is ready to move on from Erin Henderson and Jasper Brinkley. Those guys are back-ups in this league. Boley at least on reputation is a better player than Henderson and likely would give you a little more as a weak-side backer than Henderson. But would he give you enough more to warrant more than a one-year flier contract? At 30? I’m not really feeling it. I’m filing this one under “I doubt it, but get back to me later.”
Now Chris Canty. Another guy with a little mileage on him. Like Boley he is 30. And Canty had knee problems in 2012. Of course injuries never scared away Rick Spielman, as evidenced by the Geoff Schwartz and John Carlson signings. You look at Canty and see a bigger guy who might be more of an anchor-type nose tackle than Letroy Guion, who frankly did not hold up well against the run last year. But I don’t really see this happening either. The Vikes appear committed to Guion for some reason and I believe if they do add defensive tackle talent it will be via the draft and maybe picking up a younger free agent.
So honestly I see little to no interest from the Vikings in either of these players. Either guy might be a slight upgrade over what you already have, but neither guy is really exciting, and both are aging. The Vikes will almost certainly add talent at defensive tackle and linebacker but it will be younger talent.