The Vikings worked hard to fix their offensive line this offseason. But the unit can’t be fully trusted until they perform at a high level in multiple regular-season games.
Minnesota’s new and improved offensive line started off the preseason great against the Saints. They were giving Kirk Cousins loads of time and they opened good-sized running lanes for Alexander Mattison.
The unit had a tougher time in Week 2 of the preseason against the Seahawks, especially when it came to creating room for Mattison to run. But they were still able to keep Cousins clean in the pocket and that was encouraging.
In the big dress rehearsal game against the Cardinals in Week 3, the Vikings’ offensive line struggled in pass protection. Cousins took some big hits and he was even sacked a couple of times.
So overall, the performance of Minnesota’s first-team offensive line during the 2019 preseason was a mixed bag at best.
Depth is a concern for this unit, especially at the tackle positions. The Vikings simply can’t afford to lose Brian O’Neill or Riley Reiff for an extended period of time this season.
It was encouraging to see them move Dakota Dozier to tackle in the preseason. He actually played quite well and gives the overall depth of Minnesota’s line a nice little boost.
The Vikings’ offensive line was arguably the weakest part of the team a season ago. Even though the team made strides to improve the unit this year, no one will feel better about the group until they put a couple of nice games together when it counts.