4 major gambles that could pay off for the Vikings in 2022

(Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports) Patrick Peterson
(Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports) Patrick Peterson /
1 of 4

What major gambles could pay off for the Minnesota Vikings during the 2022 season?

It’s been an eventful offseason for the Minnesota Vikings that started with a complete shift in direction at the very top and now sees the team embarking on a pivotal training camp ahead of the new campaign. Missing the postseason in 2021 was classed as an underachievement considering the talent across the roster, so a change in direction could be the catalyst behind improved fortunes next time around.

The Vikings opted for tweaking rather than rebuilding this spring. There was not much money to go around, but one cannot look at the roster now and think it isn’t much improved from the options that ended the 2021 season.

It’s been a methodical approach from the new regime. But there were some risks taken along the way that could determine their fortunes in the coming months.

With this in mind, here are four major gambles that could pay off for the Vikings in 2022.

Major Gamble No. 1

Minnesota Vikings
(Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports) Ed Donatell /

Switch to a 3-4 defense

Mike Zimmer prided himself on strong defenses throughout his tenure as head coach. But there will be a new man calling the shots next season thanks to the appointment of Ed Donatell.

The respected defensive coordinator will look to hit the ground running with a new 3-4 base defense. Minnesota has recruited well around this system during the offseason, but they are a little light across their front three and if certain players get hurt, then it will be a stern test for those with less experience further down the pecking order.

Donatell is sure to have his players ready for some stiff upcoming challenges. If everyone buys in from the outset, then this could be the spark that ignites the Vikings’ defense in 2022.