4 Vikings players who could emerge as alphas in 2021

(Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports) Justin Jefferson
(Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports) Justin Jefferson /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) Cameron Dantzler /

Cameron Dantzler – CB

There wasn’t a lot Cameron Dantzler could do about those first-year complications that every rookie cornerback seems to endure. But he can look back on his opening campaign in the pros with a great sense of pride.

The Minnesota Vikings relied heavily on both Dantzler and Jeff Gladney in 2020 – probably more than they should have – and this came with some obvious problems that hurt them in key moments.

It remains to be seen whether Gladney is still on the roster by the time Week 1 rolls around due to his legal issues, but Dantzler should continue being an important part of the rotation if the necessary adjustments are made this offseason.

Dantzler featured in 11 games – starting 10 – last season and came away from the campaign with a highly encouraging 70.9 grade from Pro Football Focus as a result of his efforts.

Having three experienced figures such as Patrick Peterson, Mackensie Alexander, and Bashaud Breeland is only going to help Dantzler. If he can lean on and learn from these recent free-agent signings, then a substantial leap in production won’t be far behind.

Many thought Gladney would be Minnesota’s next great shutdown corner. As it turned out, they potentially acquired one later in the 2020 NFL Draft.