What to expect from new Vikings defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson

(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) Sheldon Richardson
(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) Sheldon Richardson /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) Sheldon Richardson /

The Bad

Coming off a down year

Last season was a tough one for Sheldon Richardson. His pass-rush grade of 66.1 from Pro Football Focus leaves much to be desired and he graded out only slightly better than that against the run with the Browns.

Thankfully, PFF isn’t the end-all when it comes to NFL stats. Richardson tied for the 11th most pressures with 51 last year, meaning he was effective, just not consistently. Since he is turning 31 this year, it will be something to keep an eye on since he’s seen heavy action over his career despite being able to avoid major injuries.

Having an undefined role

Being a jack of all trades can be a wonderful thing for a player, but having to get in a mindset to “get in where you fit in” can be difficult. However, if he does remain a situational pass rusher, any worries of him playing out of position could be elevated. This will be something to watch.

More needs on the roster

It’s great that Minnesota is securing the defensive line, but a lack of depth at other positions, including safety, wide receiver, and the offensive line, has to be worrisome for the fan base going forward.