Have the Vikings achieved their goals for the 2022 offseason?

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Za'Darius Smith
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) Za'Darius Smith /

The Minnesota Vikings knew they had to improve and address some areas of concern if they wanted to be a playoff team and retake the NFC North.

In 2021, the Minnesota Vikings lost the majority of their games by one score or less. Every year it appears as though the Vikings aren’t far away from making a legitimate run in the playoffs, but something seems to be holding them back.

In previous years, the offensive line was the major need for Minnesota. But last season, a lot more gaps appeared, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Injuries and lack of depth in certain areas of the field really showed for the Vikings in 2021, especially at the end of games.

New Minnesota general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell knew they had a good young core that could be the foundation of a possible championship team. However, they also knew that a few good pieces in free agency and the draft could help the Vikings make a run in the postseason as early as this year.

But with regards to this upcoming season, three areas needed to be addressed, and Minnesota has done so adequately. Now, they are a much better team than they were at this point last year. As always, the offensive line was a cause for concern, but the area that required the most attention from the Vikings front office was the defensive backfield. Cornerbacks were of utmost importance.

How did the Minnesota Vikings address these areas during the 2022 offseason?

Through the draft and free agency, Minnesota loaded up on all three of their needs. The Vikings did well to shore up both sides of the line of scrimmage in free agency.

They secured the services of one of the best pass rushers available in Za’Darius Smith, as well as former Buffalo Bills interior defensive lineman Harrison Phillips, who was the first signing of the Kwesi era. Free-agent offensive lineman Chris Reed should also come right in and fill a major need at right guard for the Vikings.

This meant the priority in the 2022 NFL draft would be cornerbacks and safeties, and Minnesota did exactly that. Former Georgia safety Lewis Cine, former Clemson cornerback Andrew Booth Jr.,  and former Missouri corner Akayleb Evans will be welcomed additions to the defense. All three could be impactful players sooner rather than later for the Vikings.

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