Recent content from Ben Goessling
Two key Vikings players, Eric Kendricks and Anthony Barr, joined the chorus criticizing Commissioner Roger Goodell's statement on the death of George Floyd.
Center Garrett Bradbury said the Vikings' virtual meetings have included efforts to give players a degree of ownership over the things they would normally be executing on the field during the offseason.
The pandemic has barely slowed NFL news but it rippled in significant ways through the Star Tribune football writer's life as full-time dad and assistant track coach.
The NFL's virtual offseason program during the coronavirus pandemic has meant extra family time for head coach Mike Zimmer, whose son (and assistant coach) Adam is with him at their Kentucky ranch.
In their 60th season, the Vikings will open at home against Green Bay for the first time and spend Christmas Day in New Orleans. But will games really be played starting Sept. 10? The coronavirus will have final say on that.
A group of 15 draftees, as well as 12 undrafted free agents will begin their education online. General Manager Rick Spielman said Tuesday the team's virtual offseason program has "been working outstanding."
When Cameron Dantzler was playing high school football as a wiry cornerback in Hammond, La., he earned the nickname "The Needle."
Coach Mike Zimmer likened the 2020 Vikings to a college football team, where programs get new players all the time. The 15-member draft class, means he'll face a new kind of challenge this season.
It could be months, not weeks, before the Vikings can see what they can get from a rookie class that emerged from the NFL's first virtual draft and will enter the league through a "virtual offseason" program.
The Vikings used the biggest prize they acquired in the Stefon Diggs trade to select his replacement and, after making a trade, picked a cornerback to start the rebuild of their secondary.
The Vikings have several major items still on its to-do list before the 2020 season. Here's how football writer Ben Goessling sees the draft unfolding, including who they'll take with their top pick.
General manager Rick Spielman used the word "evolution" three times during a news conference about the draft to describe the state of his team's roster. What did that mean?
The Vikings general manager says he never intended to trade the unhappy receiver, but the Bills' offer changed his mind.
On March 16, Viking quarterback Kirk Cousins had his contract restructured as star receiver Stefon Diggs got his wish and was sent to the Buffalo Bills.
With team facilities closed and the NFL shifting to a "virtual offseason" program, players are looking to trade Organized Team Activities for a DIY approach to preparing for the 2020 season.
There's a link in the Vikings offense to Tennessee -- where Tajae Sharpe played for four seasons -- that runs through, of all places, Green Bay.
Sharpe caught 25 passes for four touchdowns last season for Tennessee. He also caught seven passes against the Vikings in his pro debut. Zettel has played for four teams in three seasons.
Less than two days after their season ended with a playoff loss to San Francisco, coach Mike Zimmer gave a telling assessment of how the team's offseason would go. It's coming true in NFL free agency.
Hill has been a fill-in on the offensive line for the past three seasons; Sendejo will rejoin familiar faces in Cleveland.
Michael Pierce, who started 14 games for Baltimore last season, is expected to replace departing Linval Joseph. Other moves included releasing offensive guard Josh Kline, the team's top free agent acquisition of 2019.
Once the Vikings went run-heavy with their offensive schemes, Stefon Diggs wanted out. He got his wish this week.
The moves underscore the Vikings' commitment to a run-heavy offense that puts Kirk Cousins under center to throw downfield off play action.
After an afternoon on social media indicating that something may be in the works, wide receiver Stefon Diggs will be headed to Buffalo in exchange for four draft picks, including the Bills' first-rounder.
Ham, who made the Pro Bowl after last season, gets a four-year deal worth $12.25 million.
The safety tied for the NFL lead in interceptions last season.
Stephen Weatherly said he expected the deal to pass by more than the 60-vote margin it did because so many players on the lower end of the league's pay scale would benefit
GM Rick Spielman said in a statement the Vikings would "remain in communication" with both players as they head into free agency but made the moves in an effort to give them more time to explore options.
The NFL canceled the annual league meeting later this month as the CBA vote continues.
Anthony Harris is hitting free agency with a chance for a big contract, and the salary cap-strapped Vikings might not be able to afford him.
Stefon Diggs caused a stir on social media recently when he removed all pictures of himself in a Vikings uniform from his Instagram account, following a season where he incurred more than $200,000 in fines.
Everson Griffen, according to a league source, has exercised the option to void the final three years of his deal, making him a free agent for the first time in his career.
Gary Kubiak succeeds Kevin Stefanski as Vikings offensive coordinator, bringing continuity to an offense that's had little of it.
Dom Capers is a familiar face in the NFC North — he was the Packers defensive coordinator from 2009-17, including their Super Bowl XLV title
The move gives Mike Zimmer's son a promotion after six years working with the Vikings' linebackers, while rewarding Patterson for his work in shaping the defensive line.
While Gary Kubiak's new role gives the Vikings' scheme some continuity, his latest turn as an NFL play-caller will come with some big decisions about how the team should proceed.
Here is a position-by-position, player-by-player breakdown of the 2019 roster, with beat writer Ben Goessling's early predictions for how the roster will look in 2020.
Mike Hughes was first listed on the Vikings' injury report with a neck injury after the team's Week 17 game against the Bears; he played 28 of the team's 75 snaps in the game
For the first time in his six seasons as Vikings head coach, Mike Zimmer and his staff will be facing personnel decisions that could be some of the most difficult they've had to make.
Changes to the coaching staff began Sunday with Kevin Stefanski being named Cleveland's head coach, and there are big questions ahead on and off the field.
As the season ended, what stood out most was perhaps the size of the gap between the Vikings and the 49ers team that will host the NFC Championship Game next Sunday.
There's something to be said for a team that's starting to believe in itself.
It appears Vikings fans should be cautiously optimistic about Adam Thielen playing in Saturday's NFC divisional playoff game against the 49ers.
You'll find the handprints of veteran coach Mike Shanahan all over the NFC playoffs. His son coaches the 49ers and there are strong connections to the Vikings and Packers, too.
The running back had 31 touches against the Saints, including 28 carries, but says he's fine now.
With the 49ers up next on Saturday, their wild-card win is already ancient history.
Season took positive turn with big game against New Orleans.
Kirk Cousins hit Kyle Rudolph with a 4-yard touchdown pass in overtime for the win. Next up is a Saturday game at San Francisco, the NFC's top seed.
Kirk Cousins and a growing group of NFL quarterbacks have bonded through an online devotional group and started working with Christian ministry Pro Athletes Outreach.
The team is confident as they prepare to face the Saints; the oddsmakers, not so much.
Chicago rallied for a 21-19 win on an Eddy Piniero field goal with 48 seconds left. Minnesota will play on the road as the No. 6 seed Sunday at the Saints
… only one of these teams is preparing for the postseason.
The team's middle linebacker suffered a quadriceps injury in Monday's loss to the Packers, while the running back continues to heal from chest and shoulder injuries.
With the Vikings' playoff position secured, Mike Zimmer and his assistants have options on who to play against the Bears in their last regular-season game.
Green Bay's defense was a major reason the Packers controlled the NFC North this season. On Monday night, that defense was a major reason the Packers clinched the division title.
The Vikings won't have Dalvin Cook, but should find room to run against a suspect Packers defense.
The decade began with the Packers winning their fourth Super Bowl. It ends with the teams tussling for a division title that's been in Minnesota more often than Green Bay over the past five years.
Special teams coordinator Marwan Maalouf made a point to praise his rookie long snapper Friday.
The Vikings will send Harrison Smith, Danielle Hunter and Dalvin Cook — but not Eric Kendricks or Kirk Cousins — to the Pro Bowl next month.
The Vikings forced seven turnovers in a game for the first time in almost a quarter-century and could have a playoff berth locked up even before playing the Packers next Monday night at U.S. Bank Stadium.
Home-field advantage isn't what it used to in some places thanks to a bigger traveling contingent, as fans get comfy in opposing stadiums.
An abundance of purple-clad fans might not be enough to push the Vikings on top.
Led by first-round pick Garrett Bradbury — who has a chance to become the first Vikings rookie since 2012 to play every snap of the season — the Vikings' 2019 rookies have stepped into significant roles.
After being badly beaten on a long touchdown pass, Xavier Rhodes argued with Mike Zimmer, threw his helmet and shoved a teammate. "I know my role," Rhodes said. "I need to play it better."
Seattle scored 24 unanswered points in the second half, using a strong running game and a long touchdown pass that led to a shouting match between Vikings coach Mike Zimmer and cornerback Xavier Rhodes.
If the Vikings are going to deliver their most important road victory in four years, they'll have to surmount Seahawks quarterback and MVP candidate Russell Wilson.
For a coach who's long said he loves proving people wrong, Mike Zimmer can put a big prize in his cross hairs on Monday night when the Vikings play at Seattle.
Adam Thielen had targeted Monday's game in Seattle as an opportunity to return, but sources said his hamstring injury flared up again during a practice.
A hamstring injury has sidelined Adam Thielen for most of the past five games. It appears Thielen will be back for Monday's game in Seattle.
Kirk Cousins' name has crept into MVP conversations, as the result of a seven-game run in which he's completed 73.3% of his passes for 2,020 yards and 18 touchdowns against one interception.
The Vikings have been able to put Dalvin Cook in the zone scheme he ran at Florida State, and he's averaged 4.8 yards per carry this season as the Vikings head into their bye week.
The late bye week gives the Vikings a chance to get healthy before their big December slate.
Kirk Cousins' three second-half touchdown passes and the Vikings' defensive resolve lead to the team's biggest comeback since 1992.
THE CALL As formidable as the Vikings have been at home so far this season, it's tough to see them losing this one against an unproven quarterback like Brandon Allen.
If the fullback is something of an endangered species in the NFL, the Vikings' scheme can be considered a refuge. And if that's the case, Gary Kubiak is one of its caretakers.
Mike Zimmer said the Vikings' addition of Gary Kubiak is "probably the best thing that's happened to me since I've been here."