5 free agency bargains the Vikings should consider in 2021
By Dean Jones
Which bargain free agents might the Minnesota Vikings want to consider this offseason?
The Minnesota Vikings need to get creative in free agency this year with little financial resources at their disposal. This is thanks in no small part to the 2021 salary-cap coming down due to COVID-19 revenue losses, leaving most teams across the NFL facing the prospect of making some substantial sacrifices as a result.
According to Sportrac, the Vikings are currently $13.2 million over the 2021 cap, which will obviously improve with the release of some established veterans. This is not ideal by any stretch of the imagination, but this is the corner Minnesota has backed itself into with some contracts that didn’t work out.
One solace for the organization is their high number of 2021 NFL Draft picks despite giving up their second-rounder for the ill-fated trade of Yannick Ngakoue.
If they want to make a return to the postseason next time around, however, Minnesota needs to find some quality veteran players who can immediately contribute in the hope the team can avoid their impending period of transition for one more season.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at five free agency bargains that the Vikings should consider this year.
Player No. 1
Cole Toner – OL
2020 Team: Los Angeles Chargers
The Vikings could use a substantial upgrade within their interior protection this offseason. Pat Elflein was mercifully put out of his misery in Minnesota during the 2020 campaign and the likes of Dru Samia and Dakota Dozier didn’t perform up to the required standard.
There does appear to be some hope that rookie Ezra Cleveland can fill a starting role with more development in the coming months. This year’s draft pool also features an extremely deep class for offensive linemen, which is music to the Vikings’ ears given their bounty of selections.
However, someone with the versatility of Cole Toner would be worth a strong look. He can play either guard or at the center spot, he didn’t give up a sack from 295 snaps for the Los Angeles Chargers in 2020, and there is a lot to like about his potential for even greater production with more responsibility on his shoulders.