6 free agents the Vikings should already be thinking about for 2021

(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) Ryan Fitzpatrick
(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) Ryan Fitzpatrick /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Allen Eyestone/The Palm Beach Post) Ryan Fitzpatrick /

Ryan Fitzpatrick – QB

Upgrading their backup quarterback situation in 2021 is not an option for the Vikings. It should absolutely be a top priority for Minnesota next year.

Drafting a young passer with an early-round selection could be what the Vikings do to improve their depth behind Kirk Cousins. But Minnesota could also turn to free agency to find a backup with a lot of experience in the NFL.

Ryan Fitzpatrick is someone who has spent a ton of time in the league as both a backup and a starter. Fitzpatrick is not a guy who is going to put a team on his back and carry them on a playoff run. But he is fully capable of coming in a helping lead a team to a few wins when needed.

He’ll be 38-years-old when the 2021 free agency period begins, so Fitzpatrick’s price tag probably won’t be too high. He would be a huge upgrade over the Vikings’ current No. 2 quarterback, Sean Mannion, and he is not someone who would threaten Cousins’ starting job, which is what Minnesota wants in their backup.

In six starts with the Miami Dolphins this season, Fitzpatrick completed 70.1 percent of his passes for 1,535 yards (255.8 per game), 10 touchdowns, seven interceptions, and a 95.0 quarterback rating. Having him behind Cousins in 2021 instead of bringing back Mannion (who will also be a free agent next year) is an incredibly easy decision for the Vikings to make.