5 candidates to be the Vikings third starting linebacker in 2021

(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Troy Dye
(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Troy Dye /
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Minnesota Vikings
Troy Dye – Minnesota Vikings (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) /

The Minnesota Vikings have locked down several starters on their defense but there is still one spot at linebacker that is up for grabs this season.

The 2021 NFL season is rapidly approaching and teams like the Minnesota Vikings will soon have some tough decisions to make concerning their 53-man roster and who will be part of their starting lineups this year.

For the most part, the defense is pretty well settled. Between returning starters and high-profile free-agent signings, all but two of the starting gigs appear to be filled and one of those available spots is at linebacker.

Eric Kendricks and Anthony Barr will return to take two of those spots, but the third is up in the air. Eric Wilson has moved on from the Vikings, as has former starter Ben Gedeon, who mysteriously left the Vikings following a concussion and was released with a failed physical designation last preseason.

Thankfully, the Vikings spend a lot of time in a nickel defense with an extra defensive back on the field in place of the third linebacker. That means having an elite player in this position isn’t necessary, but making sure it is a serviceable individual is important.

Let’s take a look at the options the Minnesota Vikings have when it comes to naming their third starting linebacker this year.