3 Vikings needs the draft can fix and 2 needs free agency can fix in 2023
By Luke Parrish
The Minnesota Vikings enter the offseason with a ton of holes to fill across the roster and plenty of opportunities to address them all.
Every offseason provides a chance for the Minnesota Vikings to get better, regardless of what they did the season prior. In 2022, Minnesota made a valiant effort to improve the defense in free agency and in the draft, but the results have been far from ideal after one season.
Now, in 2023, the spring and summer are probably going to look very similar to the last – with the Vikings dumping resources into an aging defense while adding a few extra pieces to the offense to tidy up some loose ends.
With all of that said, there are methods and pathways to creating a new-look roster next season that can maximize the resources Minnesota has when the new league year opens. For starters, the Vikings are currently over the salary cap and only hold four draft picks in the upcoming NFL Draft in April.
Roster cuts will certainly remove some of the financial burdens, and there will probably be some significant moves in that regard as the league year approaches. For now, however, that is an afterthought. Rather than looking at who to remove, we also need to acknowledge where exactly Minnesota needs to get better and how they can do that.
There is a clear difference between a draft need and a free agency need, especially when building a competitive football team. The draft is to set you up for years to come, to build a foundation of the future, and to get cheaper players that can contribute out of the gate.
Free agency, then, is an asset that allows front offices to fill in the missing pieces and add the final touches for a shorter window – barring a superstar hitting the market at the onset of his prime. For the Vikings, they need to know how to attack this offseason and focus their additions to fit these molds.
So, which of their needs heading into the offseason should be fixed via the draft, and which can be addressed once free agency opens?