Vikings believe Bowman a value player for corner

  • Article by: DAN WIEDERER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 27, 2012 - 7:43 AM

The 27-year-old cornerback signed a one-year deal after an inconsistent four seasons with the Chicago Bears.

hide

Zack Bowman (35)

Photo: Associated Press,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

WEST PALM BEACH, FLA. - The news surfaced around breakfast time Monday. The Vikings, on Day 13 after the free-agent marketplace opened, finally had signed a defensive player from outside Winter Park.

His identity: Zack Bowman, 27 years old, a cornerback formerly of the Chicago Bears.

His objective: to help upgrade a Vikings secondary that spent most of 2011 held together by chicken wire and bubble gum, allowing more than four times as many touchdown passes as it collected interceptions.

Now enter Bowman, still young, still promising, plenty capable of becoming a solid player in the system of new defensive coordinator Alan Williams.

Was it a headline-stealing transaction? By no means. But hey, when you're in rebuilding mode, you've got to start somewhere. So while the Jets might have magnetized the NFL's hype machine with their bright lights Monday introduction of quarterback Tim Tebow, the Vikings' less impactful news featured the acquisition of a defensive back who spent last season as a backup to Tim Jennings.

Bowman's upside? For starters, he has good size at 6-1 and 196 pounds. Plus, he's instinctive and quick, and in his second NFL season in 2009, he led the Bears with six interceptions.

"I'm not quite sure why things haven't worked out for him in Chicago," Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said from the league's owners meetings. "But we want to give him a chance to compete. He's shown those flashes that we like to see. Hopefully we can get some consistency out of him when we get him and work with him."

The right fit

Bowman agreed to a one-year deal, the latest in a string of short-term signings that have failed to enthuse a downtrodden Vikings fan base yet serve a purpose nonetheless.

Sticking true to his "build through the draft and fill in the gaps through free agency" philosophy, General Manager Rick Spielman has spent much of his March seeking out what he labels "value players," potentially solid contributors who don't require a huge initial investment.

Others signed to one-year deals over the past two weeks: linebacker Erin Henderson, fullbacks Lex Hilliard and Jerome Felton, receiver Devin Aromashodu and offensive lineman Geoff Schwartz.

Frazier is on board with the overarching philosophy, understanding the Vikings' plans to attack this offseason with an intense focus on the draft yet little intention of reeling in a big-splash free agent.

The coach attempted to explain that rationale Monday.

"We're looking for guys who really fit what we're looking for from a character standpoint and athletically," Frazier said. "Those big names aren't as big of a priority as guys who fit what we're building. The guys we've identified and signed fit what we're looking for and give us competition at positions. We're really trying to create quality competition at as many positions as we can."

Doing their homework

Team president and co-owner Mark Wilf also chimed in Monday, fully backing the rebuilding approach of Spielman, whom he helped promote to the GM's role only two days after last season ended.

"Again, we want to be successful in the long term," Wilf said. "And what Rick is about is a long-term process. ... We want to win right away too. But the main thing is we want to be first rate and first class on a consistent basis."

It's been nearly two weeks now since the marquee free agent names at the Vikings' biggest positions of need have settled -- receivers Vincent Jackson (in Tampa Bay) and Pierre Garcon (Washington) and cornerbacks Brandon Carr (Dallas), Cortland Finnegan (St. Louis) and Carlos Rogers (San Francisco).

So what would have been the disadvantage for the Vikings of making a serious run at such standouts?

"If there is a disadvantage," Frazier said, "sometimes you have to sway your team in that new guy's direction. And then you get away from 'team.' At the same time, if it was the right guy, they can make you better overnight.

"We talked about all the free agents, every single one who was out there. And I can assure you we did our homework. The guys that we've really gone after hard are the ones that will give us the best chance to be successful."

Bowman is the latest player to fit. Even more exciting for the Vikings, the draft is now just four weeks away, a valuable chance to add 10 more pieces to the puzzle.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Los Angeles - LP: B. Wilson 7 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Grimm 8
Detroit - WP: M. Scherzer 3 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: J. Shields 2
Philadelphia 3 Bottom 8th Inning
Oakland 0
Toronto 5 Bottom 8th Inning
NY Yankees 2
Arizona 1 Top 9th Inning
Colorado 5
Boston - R. De La Rosa 6:05 PM
Baltimore - C. Tillman
Milwaukee - M. Garza 6:05 PM
Pittsburgh - E. Volquez
Washington - J. Zimmermann 6:10 PM
Miami - J. Cosart
NY Mets - J. Niese 6:10 PM
Atlanta - M. Minor
Chicago WSox - H. Noesi 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - C. Archer
Cleveland - T. House 6:10 PM
Minnesota - T. May
Seattle - C. Young 6:10 PM
Houston - D. Keuchel
Cincinnati - M. Leake 6:15 PM
St. Louis - M. Wacha
San Francisco - Y. Petit 7:40 PM
San Diego - A. Cashner
Texas - C. Lewis 8:05 PM
LA Angels - J. Weaver
San Diego 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Dallas 9/21/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Washington 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Houston 9/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Minnesota 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Tennessee 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Baltimore 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Green Bay 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Indianapolis 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Oakland 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New England
San Francisco 9/21/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Denver 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Kansas City 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Miami
Pittsburgh 9/21/14 7:30 PM
Carolina
Chicago 9/22/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
NY Giants 9/25/14 7:25 PM
Washington
Connecticut 14 FINAL
So Florida 17
Old Dominion 45 FINAL
Rice 42
Troy 0 FINAL
(13) Georgia 66
Georgia Tech 27 FINAL
Virginia Tech 24
Eastern Mich 14 FINAL
(11) Michigan State 73
Iowa 24 FINAL
Pittsburgh 20
Bowling Green 17 FINAL
(19) Wisconsin 68
Maryland 34 FINAL
Syracuse 20
Tulane 13 FINAL
Duke 47
Hawaii 12 FINAL
Colorado 21
Marshall 48 FINAL
Akron 17
Utah 26 Delayed 7:51
Michigan 10
Army 21 FINAL
Wake Forest 24
North Carolina 27 3rd Qtr 0:55
East Carolina 56
Virginia 26 4th Qtr 8:06
(21) BYU 34
(6) Texas A&M 58 4th Qtr 3:16
SMU 6
Rutgers 31 4th Qtr 4:23
Navy 24
Central Mich 10 4th Qtr 9:46
Kansas 17
Florida 21 4th Qtr 13:30
(3) Alabama 35
Louisville 28 3rd Qtr 14:15
FIU 3
San Jose St 7 Delayed 11:38
Minnesota 17
Texas State 14 Delayed 13:35
Illinois 6
Fla Atlantic 19 4th Qtr 4:44
Wyoming 17
Indiana 24 3rd Qtr 0:45
(18) Missouri 17
Massachusetts 7 4th Qtr 11:26
Penn State 48
Georgia State 0 2nd Qtr 14:07
Washington 0
Appalachian St 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Miss State 6:00 PM
(8) LSU
Northern Ill 6:00 PM
Arkansas
Middle Tennessee 6:00 PM
Memphis
Utah State 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Miami-Ohio 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Idaho 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 6:00 PM
Toledo
(14) So Carolina 6:30 PM
Vanderbilt
(4) Oklahoma 6:30 PM
West Virginia
Ga Southern 6:30 PM
South Alabama
UNLV 7:00 PM
Houston
(22) Clemson 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State
Miami-Florida 7:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
New Mexico 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 9:00 PM
Arizona
Louisiana 9:30 PM
Boise State
(2) Oregon 9:30 PM
Washington St
San Diego St 9:30 PM
Oregon State
Texas Tech 9/25/14 6:30 PM
(25) Oklahoma State
Appalachian St 9/25/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
(12) UCLA 9/25/14 9:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Middle Tennessee 9/26/14 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
Fresno State 9/26/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
(1) Florida State 9/27/14 2:00 AM
NC State
Duke 9/27/14 2:00 AM
Miami-Florida
North Carolina 9/27/14 2:00 AM
(22) Clemson
Texas-El Paso 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(20) Kansas State
Tennessee 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(13) Georgia
Vanderbilt 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Kentucky
Wyoming 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(11) Michigan State
Northwestern 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
TCU 9/27/14 11:00 AM
SMU
Iowa 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Tulane 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Rutgers
So Florida 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Colorado State 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Western Mich 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Virginia Tech
Maryland 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Indiana
Akron 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/27/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Arkansas 9/27/14 2:30 PM
(6) Texas A&M
Kent State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Virginia
Western Ky 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Minnesota 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Wake Forest 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Louisville
FIU 9/27/14 2:30 PM
UAB
Miami-Ohio 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Colorado 9/27/14 3:00 PM
California
Louisiana Tech 9/27/14 3:00 PM
(5) Auburn
Texas 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Kansas
Temple 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Connecticut
(16) Stanford 9/27/14 3:15 PM
Washington
TX-San Antonio 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Fla Atlantic
South Alabama 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Idaho
Cincinnati 9/27/14 5:00 PM
(23) Ohio State
Rice 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
(18) Missouri 9/27/14 6:00 PM
(14) So Carolina
Boise State 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Air Force
Central Mich 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
Troy 9/27/14 6:00 PM
ULM
New Mexico St 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(8) LSU
Memphis 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(10) Ole Miss
Texas State 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Washington St 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Utah
(9) Notre Dame 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Syracuse
(7) Baylor 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Iowa State
UNLV 9/27/14 7:00 PM
San Diego St
Illinois 9/27/14 8:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
Oregon State 9/27/14 9:30 PM
(17) USC
Nevada 9/27/14 9:30 PM
San Jose St
Vancouver FC 0 2nd Half 30:00
Portland 1
Houston 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
New England 6:30 PM
Columbus
San Jose 6:30 PM
Montreal
Seattle 6:30 PM
Red Bull New York
D.C. 7:30 PM
Chicago
FC Dallas 9:30 PM
Los Angeles
Toronto 40 FINAL
Brt Columbia 23
Edmonton 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Calgary 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Ottawa 9/21/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Montreal 9/26/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 9/26/14 9:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/27/14 5:30 PM
Winnipeg
Brt Columbia 9/27/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Vikings and Gophers do this weekend?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close