Minnesota Vikings: There will be defensive growing pains in 2020

Minnesota Vikings (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Minnesota Vikings (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

The Minnesota Vikings will have a lot of new faces on defense as growing pains are to be expected this upcoming season.

So far this offseason, the Minnesota Vikings have made some decent moves to continue their momentum. In 2019, the Vikings enjoyed a 10-6 season that earned them a spot in the NFL Playoffs. They made it all the way to the NFC Divisional Playoff game and unfortunately, lost to the San Francisco 49ers.

The team we saw then will look a lot different this upcoming season when it comes to the defensive side of the ball. Due to posting a very solid season, free agency came swiftly and saw many of their core defensive players get signed away to other teams. From Trae Waynes, Stephen Weatherly, Everson Griffen, Linval Joseph and others, opposing teams saw the value of all these fine players hoping to bring similar success to their organizations.

It won’t be easy to recover from so many defensive players not being around anymore but as is the case when these kinds of situations happen, the show must go on with the next man up. The Vikings spent their second of two first-round picks on premier cornerback Jeff Gladney out of Texas Christian to help soften the blow.

The Minnesota Vikings will have growing pains in their defensive secondary

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Of course, one top rookie won’t be enough to make up for all these missing players but it’s a start to build a better foundation for the future. In the grand scheme of things, while they’ll be defensive growing pains in 2020, head coach Mike Zimmer is the perfect man for the job to get everyone on the same page yet again.

Zimmer spent the majority of his coaching career as a defensive coordinator with the Atlanta Falcons, Cincinnati Bengals, and Dallas Cowboys so it shouldn’t take long for the defense to be a strength again. The Vikings had a whopping 15 draft picks to work with at the 2020 NFL Draft as they used nine on defensive players. The Vikings’ defensive secondary will be a lot younger and a bit inexperienced but over time they should be able to put everything together once all the kinks are worked out.

It won’t be easy but it can be an exciting time for the Vikings as they do their best to once again be a playoff-contending team. They still have a big chunk of returning players that pushed the envelope last season to achieve such success so it’ll all come down to the overall culture. One of which that introduces new blood in a smart and systematic way while catering to their key strengths.

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Overall, expect to see some defensive growing pains in 2020, especially early on in the season. It’ll more than likely take a few weeks for all these new players to fit in and find their niche but expectations are high for the Vikings to once again be a top team in the NFC North. 2020 will be another interesting season for the Vikings as early predictions have them going 11-5 even with all these new players on defense.