5 forgotten former Vikings players that are still in the NFL

Pittsburgh Steelers TE MyCole Pruitt
Pittsburgh Steelers TE MyCole Pruitt / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

Part of the fun of being a Minnesota Vikings fan is keeping tabs on all the players who have donned that glorious shade of purple. Some players' stints with the Vikings may have lasted longer than others, but once a player dons that horned helmet in a game that matters, he'll always be a part of Skol Nation, no matter what.

Sometimes, a player isn't with the team for more than a couple of seasons, and after a few years, we forget about their time with the Vikings. We are reminded of them when we see them pop up on another team's depth chart or see them suit up against the Vikings on a Sunday.

So, who are a few former members of the Vikings who we may have forgotten about who are still in the NFL?

Forgotten former Minnesota Vikings players that are still in the NFL

Jalyn Holmes - DE

Jalyn Holmes was a fourth-round pick of the Vikings back in 2018. Holmes spent three seasons in Minnesota with his best year coming in 2020, when he racked up 36 total tackles and two tackles for a loss. He only mustered one sack during his span with the Vikings and was released in the Summer of 2021.

Holmes was then snapped up by the New Orleans Saints, where he spent the 2021 season. He then played for the Bears in 2022 and is now a member of the New York Jets.

Surprisingly, Holmes is still in the league. He hasn't quite lived up to his fourth-round billing and only has eight tackles over the last two seasons, yet he remains employed. The fact he's managed to stick around for six seasons, and possibly seven, is a little shocking, but it's a credit to his perseverance.

MyCole Pruitt - TE

MyCole Pruitt has been on just about every single team in the league since being drafted by the Vikings in the fifth round back in 2015. That may be a bit of an exaggeration, but after he was released by the Vikings, he has played for the Chicago Bears, Houston Texans, Tennessee Titans, Atlanta Falcons, and now the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Pruitt hasn't just hung around though, he's been pretty productive. In his career, he's totaled 71 receptions for 748 yards, with 12 touchdowns. He's made a career out of being the second or third tight end on the depth chart, and stepping up when his opportunity arises. He's a heck of a bench player and those players have value for NFL teams.

Pruitt is entering his first season with the Steelers, and the crafty veteran will need to have a solid training camp to make the roster. Pruitt has defied the odds before, and to see him earn a spot on his sixth NFL team this preseason wouldn't come as a shock to anyone.

Kyle Hinton - OG

Kyle Hinton was drafted by the Vikings at almost the end of the 2020 NFL Draft, with the 253rd overall pick. It was noteworthy as he was one of only five players to ever be drafted out of Washburn University.

Hinton was deemed a project from day one, and his journey to playing time was expected to be a long one. He finally did see some action in 2022, appearing in two games. Hinton never did develop at the pace that the Vikings hoped, and after the 2022 season, he was signed by the Falcons to a futures contract.

Hinton was active for 16 games for the Falcons in 2023 and even started one contest. He is currently the backup right guard in Atlanta. Time will tell if he ends up sticking with the Falcons, but the odds appear to be in his favor.

Harrison Hand - DB

For those who don't remember, Harrison Hand was drafted by the Vikings in the fifth round of the 2020 NFL Draft. He appeared in 14 games as a rookie and even started one at cornerback. He was a feisty cover man who didn't show any fear on the field and showed promise that first season, accumulating 17 total tackles and three pass breakups in spot duty.

He took a step back in year two, playing in just nine games and tallying just five tackles. He didn't make it out of training camp in 2022 and was released. He was signed by the New York Giants and waived a week later. He was signed to their practice squad but released early that season.

Hand ended up with the Bears, and appeared in four games, and even got a start. He did rack up 12 tackles in those for games, which isn't too shabby. He was released in April of that year and didn't play in 2023.

It appeared as if Hand's NFL career was at an end, but just over a week ago, he was given one last chance, as he signed with the Falcons. Hand will be a long shot to make that roster, but he has proved to be a capable player when he sees action.

Armon Watts - DT

Armon Watts's ending with the Vikings was a bit of an abrupt and shocking one. He was slated to be a starting defensive lineman throughout the preseason but then was let go.

Minnesota general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah wasn't the man who drafted him, and they may have led to the decision to let him go in favor of Ross Blacklock. Blacklock ended up being a huge bust with the Vikings, and Watts went on to have a fairly productive season with the Bears.

Watts then jumped to the AFC, where he became a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers. He is still in the league, having signed with the New England Patriots in the offseason. Watts has been far from a bust in his career, racking up 140 career tackles, seven tackles for a loss, and eight and a half sacks. That's solid production from a sixth-round pick.

It's still a little head-scratching how Watts went from a projected starter to being cut. It's unclear if there were issues off the field or what, but it's also worth wondering if Adofo-Mensah regrets that move, seeing how Watts is still producing, and Blacklock is just hoping to make the practice squad.

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