How many new starters will the Vikings have in the 2022 season?

(Photo by Chris Unger/Getty Images) Za'Darius Smith
(Photo by Chris Unger/Getty Images) Za'Darius Smith /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports) Harrison Phillips /

New Vikings Starters on Defense for Week 1

Harrison Phillips – NT

A new addition from free agency this year, Harrison Phillips will man the middle of Minnesota’s new-look defense this season. Phillips is one of the best run-stopping defensive linemen in the NFL, which is good news for a Vikings defense that struggled against the run in 2021.

Jonathan Bullard/Ross Blacklock/James Lynch – DE

Following Minnesota’s recent decision to move on from Armon Watts, who the team picks to start in Week 1 next to Phillips and Dalvin Tomlinson is still up in the air. No matter who starts though, don’t be surprised if the Vikings utilize a rotation of Jonathan Bullard, Ross Blacklock, and James Lynch against the Packers next Sunday.

Za’Darius Smith – OLB

Arguably Minnesota’s biggest free-agent acquisition of the offseason, Za’Darius Smith teaming up with Danielle Hunter could make for an extremely dangerous pass-rushing duo if both are able to remain healthy for the majority of the 2022 campaign.

Jordan Hicks – ILB

When we look back at the 2022 season, Jordan Hicks could be viewed as one of the most impactful new additions. Signed in free agency earlier this year by the Vikings, the veteran defender will step on the field in Week 1 as the team’s other starting inside linebacker next to Eric Kendricks.

Cameron Dantzler – CB

After beginning his rookie year in 2020 as one of Minnesota’s two starting cornerbacks, Cameron Dantzler wasn’t even active for the team’s 2021 regular-season opener.

This year, Dantzler will enter Week 1 as part of the Vikings’ starting lineup, and it’s safe to say he’ll probably be looking to prove some people wrong when he gets on the field next Sunday.

Camryn Bynum – S

Following the departure of Xavier Woods this offseason, Minnesota used their 2022 first-round pick to draft former Georgia safety Lewis Cine. Many assumed Cine would take Woods’ spot in the starting lineup this season, but Camryn Bynum had other plans.

Instead of the rookie, Bynum will be the one to begin the 2022 campaign as the Vikings’ other starting safety next to Harrison Smith. How long will it last until Cine finds his way into the starting lineup? That remains to be seen.