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Friday (Top free agent on Vikings? Not Jared Allen) edition: Wha' Happened?

Posted by: Michael Rand under Vikings Updated: February 28, 2014 - 7:33 AM

The prevailing sentiment around the Vikings retaining some of their own free agents has gone something like this: after extending DE Brian Robison during the 2013 season, they would let fellow DE and veteran Jared Allen leave in pursuit of one more big contract while trying to retain a presumably cheaper, younger and more versatile DE in Everson Griffen.

A list from NFL.com -- keep in mind, just a list -- ranking the top 101 free agents in the NFL this offseason, however, might give us a reason to at least wonder how easy all of that will be.

The site lists Griffen -- not Allen -- as the most coveted Vikings free agent for all of those reasons we listed above. Allen had a wonderful six-year run with the Vikings, reaching double-digit sacks in all six seasons, but he will be 32 in a month and might not fit into as many schemes as he once did with a lot of teams playing the trendy 3-4 defense. Griffen is just 26 and has played well in a variety of roles in the past couple of seasons, totaling 13.5 sacks between 2012 and 2013.

NFL.com says Griffen is the No. 22-ranked free agent in the NFL, the highest ranking bestowed any Vikings player, and classifies him as an "impact starter." Allen is No. 33, one designation lower under "starters with questions."

Of Griffen it is written: Though never a starter, Griffen has flashed dominant pass-rushing ability as a highly athletic and versatile nickel-package specialist.

Of Allen: Don't discount Allen's endurance. He's not the pass rusher he once was, but he can still credibly play more snaps than practically any other player.

Our take is that it certainly makes more sense for the Vikings to pursue Griffen at this stage of his development and the team's progress even though Allen has productive seasons left in him. That said, if NFL GMs are thinking the same way, it could be harder (or at least more expensive) to retain Griffen than some of us might have guessed.

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New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Portland 0 Postponed
Brooklyn 0
Sacramento 0 Postponed
New York 0
Philadelphia 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Minnesota 7:00 PM
Oklahoma City
Orlando 7:00 PM
Memphis
Boston 8:00 PM
Utah
Denver 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
Army 35 2nd Half
American Univ 29
Wright State 33 2nd Half 20:00
Detroit 27
Syracuse 47 2nd Half 16:56
North Carolina 43
Cleveland State 31 2nd Half 16:28
Oakland 33
Delaware State 33 2nd Half 17:09
NC Central 29
High Point 31 2nd Half 20:00
Presbyterian 28
Howard 14 1st Half 10:30
Bethune-Cookman 16
Coppin State 3 1st Half 14:25
NC A&T 10
Nicholls 25 1st Half 2:23
Northwestern St 38
Hampton 21 1st Half 5:44
SC State 18
Gardner-Webb 1 1st Half 17:44
Campbell 4
MD-Eastern Shore 7:00 PM
Florida A&M
Stephen F Austin 7:00 PM
Lamar
Central Arkansas 0 1st Half 20:00
New Orleans 0
Norfolk State 0 1st Half 20:00
Savannah State 0
TX A&M-CC 8 1st Half 15:20
SE Louisiana 5
Sam Houston St 7:00 PM
Abilene Christian
McNeese State 4 1st Half 15:40
Incarnate Word 5
Milwaukee 2 1st Half 15:59
Valparaiso 12
Alcorn State 7:30 PM
Alabama A&M
Southern U 7:30 PM
Alabama State
Prairie View 8:00 PM
Ark-Pine Bluff
Texas 8:00 PM
Iowa State
Texas Southern 8:00 PM
Miss Valley St
Long Island 85 FINAL
Bryant 88
Central Conn St 51 FINAL
St Francis-NY 49
Fairleigh Dickinson 0 Postponed
Sacred Heart 0
St Francis-PA 87 FINAL
Wagner 74
Delaware State 59 FINAL
NC Central 66
Howard 53 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 61
Coppin State 49 FINAL
NC A&T 67
Hampton 88 FINAL
SC State 53
Norfolk State 54 FINAL
Savannah State 56
MD-Eastern Shore 54 FINAL
Florida A&M 64
Samford 32 FINAL
(25) Chattanooga 49
Prairie View 83 FINAL
Ark-Pine Bluff 66
Alcorn State 53 2nd Half 6:18
Alabama A&M 44
Southern U 50 2nd Half 5:54
Alabama State 40
Texas Southern 54 2nd Half 4:10
Miss Valley St 48
(12) Texas A&M 31 2nd Half 20:00
(1) South Carolina 39
Robert Morris 36 2nd Half 20:00
Mount St Marys 21
East Tenn St 39 2nd Half 15:38
Mercer 33
Wofford 34 2nd Half 16:18
Furman 30
Morehead St 27 2nd Half 20:00
Tenn Tech 24
Illinois 24 2nd Half 19:06
Michigan 39
Quinnipiac 0 Postponed
Manhattan 0
Saint Peters 0 Postponed
Rider 0
(18) Miss State 8:00 PM
Auburn
(15) Nebraska 8:00 PM
(20) Iowa
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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 NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9

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