6 free-agent defensive linemen the Vikings could sign in 2024

Miami Dolphins defensive lineman Christian Wilkins
Miami Dolphins defensive lineman Christian Wilkins / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages
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Free-Agent Defensive Lineman No. 3

D.J. Reader

2023 Team: Cincinnati Bengals

D.J. Reader is a 6-foot-3, 335-pound tank that could play nose tackle for the Vikings.

He was a fifth-round pick of the Houston Texans in 2016 and he played with the franchise through the 2019 season. But for the past four years, Reader has been a member of the Bengals.

As a Bengal, Reader played in Super Bowl LVI against the Los Angeles Rams and had a sack during the loss.

In 2023, he had 34 combined tackles, one sack, seven quarterback hits, one pass deflection, and one fumble recovered.

In his career, Reader has 277 combined tackles, 23 tackles for loss, 44 quarterback hits, eight pass deflections, and 9.5 sacks.

Reader started the first 14 games of the 2023 season before sustaining a season-ending torn quad against (coincidently) Minnesota in Week 15.

As a hefty nose tackle, Reader would be perfect for occupying multiple blockers against the Vikings' opponents. That would free fellow defenders to bring the pain and bulk up the team’s sack numbers and tackles for loss.