5 early free agents the Vikings could target in 2022

(Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports) Tyrann Mathieu
(Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports) Tyrann Mathieu /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Tyrann Mathieu /

Tyrann Mathieu – S

2021 Team: Kansas City Chiefs

As stated previously, the Vikings have a dilemma where prolific veteran Harrison Smith is concerned next spring. Any slight regression from the safety in 2021 will make it difficult for the team to give him the sort of money he’s looking for and although it would be the end of an era, this sort of situation is not uncommon in the NFL.

Smith has been such an important part of the defensive game plan in Minnesota for the best part of a decade, so if he does move on a prolific player needs to be found to ensure no momentum is lost. If the Vikings decide to make a big splash in free agency, then Tyrann Mathieu is someone who ticks all the boxes.

The former LSU star has been a revelation for the Kansas City Chiefs in recent seasons. This has come with back-to-back Super Bowl appearances and the ability to influence the game almost anywhere in the field.

Mathieu will command top dollar with another strong campaign next season. The Chiefs have worked miracles with their salary cap in 2020 with a view to mounting another challenge, but they might not be able to find the money their stud safety is looking for next spring.

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Whether the Vikings can muster up enough cash to make Mathieu a solid offer is up for debate. But it’s hard to deny his energy, ball-hawk skills, and aggression wouldn’t be a big hit in Minnesota if Smith ended his long association with the franchise.