The Vikings have made it happen with Vlad Ducasse. After a weekend report in the New York media saying the Vikes were “likely” to land Ducasse, Adam Caplan confirmed early Monday morning that Minnesota has indeed signed the former Jets offensive lineman to a one-year deal.
The fact that Ducasse was able to only score a one-year deal in his first crack at free agency after being taken in the second round in 2010 says all you need to know about how his career went in New York.
After an up-and-down three year tenure at guard, Ducasse was finally benched in 2013 by the Jets in favor of rookie Brian Winters. Penalties and overall poor performance are cited as the main reasons for Ducasse’s banishment to the pines.
Clearly, this is not a guy the Vikings are counting on to step in and perform at a Pro Bowl level. But they are at least hoping he can give Charlie Johnson some legit competition in camp and perhaps squeeze Johnson out at left guard, allowing the Vikes to use Johnson as a swing player (his ideal role).
Ducasse certainly has the talent to be a starter in the league, but after his regression in New York, it’s not something we should bank on. The Vikings are just hoping that Jeff Davidson can work with him and maybe unlock some of that potential.
I still think, even with the multiple signings at guard, that the Vikes will look to draft at that position as well. In the past they have targeted guards and centers in the later rounds and I think that’s what we’ll see this year.
Jeff Baca is also still on the roster, but it’s looking increasingly unlikely that he will figure into the team’s future plans.