Nothing spices up a boring free agency period like a juicy rumor about a player from a rival team being targeted. A rumor of that type indeed busted out on Wednesday night thanks to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. Biggs connected Brian Urlacher to the Vikings. He said Urlacher’s camp was in contact with the Vikings and the Vikes were monitoring the situation.
Only one problem with this rumor of Urlacher being on the Vikings’ radar screen: he’s not worth signing. For one thing, he’s old. Rick Spielman doesn’t target guys in their mid-30s at any position. And even if age weren’t an issue for Urlacher, his physical state would be. Watch any tape of Urlacher from 2012 and you can see his wheels just aren’t there. Yes he still has the savvy, and goodness knows he understands how to play MLB in the Tampa-2 system, but he just doesn’t physically have it anymore. And there’s no getting around that.
Okay but maybe the Vikings are just that desperate for some kind of veteran presence in the middle of their defense. They did give away Antoine Winfield, leaving a large leadership gap. Maybe you can argue for signing Urlacher just to bring a little experience to a unit that figures to be even younger this year overall. But you would still have to overlook the obvious physical slide. Even if Urlacher came super-cheap, I just couldn’t see it happening.
The appeal here is only that Urlacher is a former Bears star and fans love poaching players from rival teams. Beyond that, I just don’t see why anyone would want this old broken down shell of a player.