Vikings News: Minnesota loses top 2022 defender to free agency

(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Duke Shelley
(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Duke Shelley /

Some significant Minnesota Vikings news was revealed on Thursday when it was announced that free-agent cornerback Duke Shelley signed with the Las Vegas Raiders.

On Thursday, some unfortunate Minnesota Vikings news broke when we found out that free-agent cornerback Duke Shelley will not be returning to the Twin Cities for the 2023 season. Instead, Shelley and the Las Vegas Raiders were able to agree to a contract.

Vikings News: Will Minnesota regret letting Duke Shelley land with the Las Vegas Raiders?

With the Vikings last season, Shelley was one of the top cornerbacks on the team’s roster. Led by a 48.9 percent allowed completion rate and a 59.6 passer rating allowed when targeted, he finished the 2022 campaign with the highest overall defensive grade from PFF among all of the corners on Minnesota’s roster.

It was easily Shelley’s best single-season performance since he entered the NFL in 2019 after the Chicago Bears used a sixth-round draft pick on him. Many figured the Vikings would bring him back for the 2023 season, but this clearly isn’t something that will be happening.

With Shelley, Patrick Peterson, and Cameron Dantzler all departing this offseason, Minnesota’s current cornerback room consists of Byron Murphy, Andrew Booth Jr., Akayleb Evans, Tay Gowan, and Kalon Barnes.

Each of the current corners on the Vikings’ roster is 25-years-old or younger, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise if Minnesota looks to add someone with a bit more NFL experience to the group before the start of the 2023 season.

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