The first week and the first wave of free agency are over. But plenty of good players remain unsigned, and GM Rick Spielman said recently the Vikings are not finished making moves.
After scanning the market of unsigned free agents and players recently released by teams, NFL.com has ranked the top 31 players available. Below is that list, with some of our commentary. Without question, free agency’s second wave has first-tier talent.
1. C Alex Mack
2. DT Henry Melton
Disruptive versus both the run and pass, Melton would strengthen a Vikings defensive line that has already been bolstered by the re-signing of
3. TE Jermichael Finley
4. CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie
The Vikings already added a stud cornerback with the signing of
5. DE Jared Allen
6. QB Michael Vick
7. CB Antonio Cromartie
See: Rodgers-Cromartie, Dominique
8. WR James Jones
There are likely too many receiver-needy teams (Carolina, NY Jets) for Jones' asking price to be reasonable for the Vikings, but he fits the profile of a typical Spielman free agent signing - young, ascending career arc, looking to be a full-time starter.
9. DT Pat Sims
10. OL Donald Penn
11. OT Zach Strief
12. RB Knowshon Moreno
Whether the Vikings were in on the bidding for Darren Sproles or not, Moreno may actually be a better get because he's younger and is a more capable ball-carrier.
13. DE Shaun Phillips
14. OG Davin Joseph
15. RB LeGarrett Blount
16. S Chris Clemons
Personally, I like the combo of
17. RB Maurice Jones-Drew
18. OL Travelle Wharton
19. WR Sidney Rice, 20. WR Santonio Holmes, 21. WR Miles Austin
There are things to like about all three receivers, but each of them also have drawbacks. Selecting a receiver in the draft seems more appealing.
22. DT Kevin Williams
Sounds like a reunion is still possible. And who wouldn't love to see Ticket finish his career with the Vikings?
23. DE Anthony Spencer
24. QB Josh Freeman
25. C Brian De La Puente
26. CB Carlos Rogers and 27. CB Asante Samuel
Their talent level would provide an upgrade in Minnesota, but does their age preclude them from consideration?
28. TE Owen Daniels
29. WR Kenny Britt
30. S Kendrick Lewis
31. DE Alex Carrington