The Vikings have 10 players set to become unrestricted free agents next week. Here’s our best guess on what happens with each.
Phil Loadholt, right tackle
Our guess: Staying. The Vikings might have to dig deeper into their pockets than they’d like to pay Loadholt what he’ll command. But retaining the 27-year-old lineman also provides needed stability up front.
Jerome Felton, fullback
Our guess: Staying. Felton loves serving as the battering ram for the league MVP. The Vikings love having him in that role. Enough said.
Erin Henderson, linebacker
Our guess: Going. Still promising athletically. But hasn’t proven himself as a three-down middle linebacker and still hasn’t fully found the discipline to be in the right place at all times. The price point here will be the key.
Jasper Brinkley, linebacker
Our guess: Staying. After missing the 2011 season because of hip surgery, Brinkley had 117 tackles and three forced fumbles last season. He showed enough growth to stick around.
Jerome Simpson, receiver
Our guess: Staying. The odd back/leg ailment that limited Simpson for two months last season might now be under control. For the right price, the Vikings might gamble again on his potential.
Jamarca Sanford, safety
Our guess: Staying. The ultimate intangibles guy. Energetic, tough, unselfish. He’s made 28 starts at safety the past two seasons and is also a major special teams contributor.
Geoff Schwartz, guard
Our guess: Going. Schwartz feels he didn’t get enough opportunity to fully prove himself in 2012, limited to 154 snaps over nine games in a platoon role with Brandon Fusco. The desire to start will lead him elsewhere.
Marvin Mitchell, linebacker
Our guess: Staying. The Vikings are comfortable with Mitchell, another special teams contributor and a serviceable backup who made two decent starts for an injured Henderson early last season.
Devin Aromashodu, receiver
Our guess: Going. He’s the consummate role player. But the Vikings need so much more from their receivers right now.
Joe Berger, guard/center
Our guess: Staying. Can probably be re-signed for cheap and has the versatility and experience to be a valuable veteran emergency fill-in.
|Aug 9 - vs. Houston||7 pm||X||27-13|
|Aug 16 - at Buffalo||6 pm||X||20-16|
|Aug 25 - at San Francisco||7 pm||X||34-14|
|Aug 29 - vs. Tennessee||7 pm||X||24-23|
|2013 regular season|
|Sep 8 - at Detroit||Noon||X||34-24|
|Sep 15 - at Chicago||Noon||X||31-30|
|Sep 22 - vs. Cleveland||Noon||X||31-27|
|Sep 29 - vs. Pittsburgh (in London)||Noon||X||34-27|
|Oct 6 - Bye|
|Oct 13 - vs. Carolina||Noon||X||35-10|
|Oct 21 - at. NY Giants||7:40 pm||X||23-7|
|Oct 27 - vs. Green Bay||7:30 pm||X||44-31|
|Nov 3 - at Dallas||Noon||X||27-23|
|Nov 7 - vs. Washington||7:25 pm||X||34-27|
|Nov 17 - at Seattle||3:25 pm||X||41-20|
|Nov. 24 - at Green Bay||Noon||26-26|
|Dec 1 - vs. Chicago||Noon||X||23-20|
|Dec 8 - at Baltimore||Noon||X||29-26|
|Dec 15 - vs. Philadelphia||Noon||X||48-30|
|Dec 22 - at Cincinnati||Noon||X||42-14|
|Dec 29 - vs. Detroit||Noon||X||14-13|