5 free-agent safeties the Minnesota Vikings could sign in 2021

(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) Keanu Neal
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) Keanu Neal /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) Jaquiski Tartt /

Jaquiski Tartt

While Keanu Neal and Malik Hooker profile more as aggressive, in-the-box safeties, Jaquiski Tartt may be the type of player the Vikings are ultimately looking for.

As a player that posted a 4.53 time in the 40-yard dash coming out of Samford, Tartt can play the cover role that Anthony Harris has excelled in and not force another change on the back end of the secondary.

The only issue is that Tartt’s career profile has been that of an average secondary. Entering his age-29 season, Tartt has never ranked in the upper half of PFF’s safety rankings, but does things good enough to keep his job.

His final year in San Francisco saw him grade 43rd among qualifying safeties, but he did so on a defense that suffered multiple injuries throughout the season.

For years, the Vikings got by with a similar player in Andrew Sendejo. While fans clammored for years to find a replacement, Sendejo played well enough to keep his job, but never enough to lose it or become too expensive to keep around.

The Vikings would hope that Tartt would be more than an average safety, but that might be all they need to replace Harris. Assuming the defensive line improves and the young cornerbacks learn from their turbulent rookie season, Tartt could be a nice compliment to Smith and help Minnesota save some money in the process.