Tashaun Gipson is expected to hit the free agent market and the Vikings’ division rivals the Chicago Bears may have interest.
Cabot says Gipson has expressed interest in coming back to Cleveland to work with returning defensive coordinator Ray Horton, the man who helped develop Gipson when he first came into the league. It appears the interest is not mutual.
When Gipson does hit the market as it appears he will, the Vikings’ division rivals the Chicago Bears could have interest.
Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune notes that the Bears are in the market for a center fielder at safety, something they haven’t had in awhile.
The Bears are currently third in the NFL in cap space but head coach John Fox cautions that the team won’t necessarily go on a spending spree (via Chicago Tribune):
"We’ve got way better cap room this year than last, not that that means we’re going to go crazy,” coach John Fox said."
The 25-year-old Gipson had a Pro Bowl season in 2014 with six interceptions but dropped off to just two in 2015. Gipson missed several games with a high ankle sprain last year. His tackling ability has been questioned but he does possess good range in coverage.
The Minnesota Vikings have been mentioned by some as a possible landing place for Gipson but his poor tackling skills make him seem like a bad fit for Mike Zimmer’s approach.
If the Vikings do pursue a free agent safety, it seems likely they would go after one of Zimmer’s former Bengals players George Iloka or Reggie Nelson. The latter has expressed interest in remaining in Cincinnati.
Iloka is younger but that only makes it more likely he will be locked up by the Bengals.