The Vikings on Friday announced that they had released guards Brandon Fusco and Mike Harris.
Following those roster changes, ESPN's Ben Goessling said Minnesota is "officially in the market for a right guard" and will most likely also address the tackle position. Goessling wrote the following about an overhaul of the offensive line that he predicts "will be substantial":
*For the second straight offseason, the offensive line will be the Vikings' chief priority – only this time, the mission cannot be characterized as an upgrade. An overhaul is necessary, with injuries and ineffective performances having stripped away all the options the team believed it had heading into training camp last year. *
Since the Vikings currently have no first-round pick in this year's NFL Draft, Goessling said the Vikings will most likely utilize free agency.
Players like Cincinnati's Kevin Zeitler will be expensive, and Bengals tackle Andrew Whitworth could be an attractive option even at age 35. The Vikings could need to add more than one veteran to the line this offseason, and few things might be more pivotal to their 2017 success than whether they make the correct line decisions (particularly at tackle) in the next couple months.
C.J. Ham returns to high school for good cause
Minnesota native C.J. Ham, coming off his rookie season with the Vikings, returned to his alma mater of Denfeld High School recently.
According to *Duluth News Tribune *reporter Jana Hollingsworth, Ham made a surprise guest appearance at a Friday pep rally and shaved Denfeld's Kong Xiong's head on stage for a good cause. Hollingsworth wrote:
*In town to visit family, Ham was invited to the school to be part of a Key Club fundraiser for a Denfeld family who lost its home to fire in December. The club raised more than $1,000 for the family, using the carrot of Key Club president Xiong's commitment to losing his hair the day before the school's formal winter dance. *
Ham appreciated the welcome he received from the Denfeld students.
"It's a very humbling feeling," Ham told Hollingsworth. "Sometimes you don't realize how much of an impact you really have on young people. ... I want to do as much as I can for them."