5 reasons why the Vikings could exceed expectations in 2020

(Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins
(Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images) Kirk Cousins /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images) Holton Hill /

Young cornerback group jells

The Vikings are rolling the dice with a young and inexperienced group of cornerbacks in 2020. They arguably got better by cutting Xavier Rhodes, but losing both Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander will probably hurt.

Minnesota has plenty of talent in their cornerback group, but the lack of experience could be something that holds them back in 2020.

Mike Zimmer’s defense often takes rookie corners at least a season to figure things out. If Jeff Gladney, Cameron Dantzler, and Harrison Hand all struggle to learn the defensive system this season, the Vikings could pay the price. However, if they are quick to pick it up and begin playing off of each other, this young cornerback group could be something special.

Mike Hughes is the leader of this group and while he’s already missed a ton of time in his NFL career, he has also had moments where he looks really good. The same goes for Holton Hill, who has missed time due to suspensions, but he has had some stretches of very good football.

Kris Boyd progressed nicely through the season last year and he could be ready for an expanded role in 2020. Gladney was a high energy ball hawk in college and he excels at making plays on the football when it is in the air. Dantzler shut down some of the best corners in college football, despite running that slow 40-yard dash time at this year’s NFL Scouting Combine.

The talent is clearly there with the young corners and if these guys can all play to their potential, Minnesota’s pass defense could be better than it was last season and be considered a strength for the team once again.

If that happens, the wins will roll in and the Vikings should finish their season well beyond the divisional round of the playoffs.