10 former Vikings players that could return for the 2024 season

Cordarrelle Patterson
Cordarrelle Patterson / Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
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Potential returning Viking No. 5

Irv Smith, tight end

The Minnesota Vikings have T.J. Hockenson and Josh Oliver under contract at tight end but have Johnny Mundt and Ben Ellefson becoming unrestricted free agents and Nick Muse as an exclusive rights free agent and the signing of Irv Smith Jr. might make a little more sense.

After a highly disappointing stint with the Cincinatti Bengals where he caught 18 passes for 115 yards and one touchdown in 12 games, Smith isn't expected to get any offers for a major offensive role in free agency.

However, being a pass-catching third string tight end could allow him to potentially work his way back into an offense, Vikings fans likely got tired of hearing how every year was going to be his breakout year, but with much lower expectations, he could be an interesting signing.

Of course, retaining Mundt, Muse, or Ellefson at a low cap hit would likely be preferable, but it's good to know there are other options at tight end out there if at least one of those players isn't able to return.