Vikings Trade Rumors: Saints May Shop Darren Sproles


Jan 4, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New Orleans Saints running back Darren Sproles (43) carries the ball during the first quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles during the 2013 NFC wild card playoff football game at Lincoln Financial Field. The Saints defeated the Eagles 26-24. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Saints are in a mode to clear cap space this offseason, having already cut a bunch of high-priced veterans.

This cost-cutting push may force the Saints to place several more players on the trade block, including running back Darren Sproles, a guy with ties to Vikings offensive coordinator Norv Turner.

Per an ESPN report, though the Saints aren’t actively shopping Sproles, they would listen to offers.

Sproles burst on the scene in 2008 as a running back/return man for Norv Turner’s San Diego Chargers, becoming a highlight reel legend for his scatback stylings and electrifying returns.

In 2011, Sproles left for the Saints via free agency and immediately became a huge weapon for Drew Brees, taking over the receiving back role once filled by Reggie Bush. Now 30, Sproles is still one of the most dynamic x-factor weapons in the league.

Given Sproles’ ties to Turner, is he a player the Vikings might pursue via trade?

We know Norv loves having a back who can catch passes. Adrian Peterson has shown flashes of receiving ability in the past, but he is not on Sproles’ level when it comes to catching balls out of the backfield.

Sproles would give the Vikings’ offense a dimension it hasn’t had at least since the days of Chester Taylor. Plus he gives you another option in the return game.

Picture this: a two-headed return team of Darren Sproles and Cordarrelle Patterson.

Sproles has the kind of talent that excites fans. He is a big play offensive weapon. And we know he fits snugly into a Norv Turner offensive scheme.

The sticking point obviously is trade value. Rick Spielman’s philosophy is all about accumulating draft picks for maximum maneuverability within the draft. Spielman would be very hesitant I’m sure to give up any picks for a player.

Given what we know about Spielman’s approach, I would not be ordering up a Darren Sproles Vikings jersey any time soon. The prospect of adding Sproles to the mix is exciting for obvious reasons, but the reality is, there is no way this happens.

There is a much greater likelihood that the Vikings target a Sproles-type talent in the draft. Adding some receiving ability to the running back corps would seem to be almost a necessity.

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