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Lunchbreak: ESPN Lists Offensive Line as Vikings Biggest Need This Offseason

The 2019 offseason has just gotten started for the Vikings, but there seems to be a clear-cut need for the team going forward.

ESPN recently looked at the biggest area each NFL team should address in the coming months, and it was the offensive line that stood out in Minnesota.

ESPN Vikings beat writer Courtney Cronin wrote that the Vikings could replace multiple starters on the line as they bolster the unit through free agency and the draft.

Cronin noted that Minnesota surrendered a league-high 227 pressures and wrote:

The same storyline that haunted the Vikings throughout 2018 is one that remains the top priority this offseason. … Minnesota has several ways it can create the cap space needed to go after a lineman or two in free agency, but it also needs to use a chunk of its draft capital in the higher rounds to begin to fix the problem.

When healthy, the Vikings offensive line consisted of left tackle Riley Reiff, Compton at left guard, center Pat Elflein, Remmers at right guard and rookie Brian O’Neill at right tackle.

Minnesota used six different starting combinations on the offensive line in 2018, but went with the unit above for the final seven games of the season.

Remmers was the only lineman to start all 16 games in 2018 as he missed just three offensive snaps all season.

Reiff, Compton and Elflein all missed at least one game due to injuries, while O’Neill took over as the starter at right tackle in Week 6 and stayed in that spot the rest of the season.

Harris named Vikings breakout star in 2018

It’s a safe bet that each NFL team will lose at least one starter to a lengthy injury over the course of the season.

That happened to the Vikings secondary in 2018 when Andrew Sendejo was placed on Injured Reserve with a groin injury, leading to a larger role for Anthony Harris.

Fox Sports North recently tabbed Harris as the Vikings breakout star in 2018 as he recorded a career-high three interceptions.

Fox Sports North wrote:

The Vikings suffered a major blow in Week 5, losing starting strong safety Andrew Sendejo to a groin injury. Enter, Anthony Harris. The fourth-year defender finished the 2018 season as Pro Football Focus's third-highest-graded safety, tying for the team lead with three interceptions in 15 games and nine starts. He went off in Week 11, picking off Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky twice.

Harris, who is at the end of his four-year rookie contract, has made 17 starts in four seasons with Minnesota.

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