5 players a new Vikings regime could get rid of in 2022

(Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports) Kirk Cousins
(Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports) Kirk Cousins /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports) Michael Pierce /

Michael Pierce, defensive tackle

Signed by the Minnesota Vikings before the 2020 NFL season, Michael Pierce was brought in to stop teams from running the ball all over the defense. Sadly, that signing hasn’t resulted in what the team was hoping for.

The Vikings’ defense has been disappointing in recent seasons. This is especially true during the 2021 campaign where they allowed 2,222 rushing yards (7th most), 4.7 yards per carry (T-3rd most), and 131 rushing first downs (6th most).

So far, Pierce has played eight games in his first two years in Minnesota due to sitting out 2020 with COVID-19 concerns and injuries in 2021. He has a cap hit of $10.2M but only has $4M guaranteed., making releasing him to save over $6M an appealing situation.

Pierce has been solid when healthy, but he has a much more inexpensive backup who has been playing well. Armon Watts looks like he would be capable of being a starter next to Dalvin Tomlinson moving forward to save the team money.