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Lunchbreak: Steve Hutchinson Listed Among Best All-Time Free Agent Signings

Most of the free agency frenzy is settling down around the NFL after teams have added players they think can boost their roster.

The hope is that the signings will produce long-term results on the field, as previous additions in league history have turned into immediate impact players.

Elliot Harrison of recently released his group of the top all-time free agent signings, and he included former Vikings guard Steve Hutchinson on his list.

Harrison wrote:

Hutchinson was a Hall of Fame finalist in his first year of eligibility for good reason. Sure, most of his legacy is tied to paving the way for Shaun Alexander on that Seahawks Super Bowl team from 2005. Immediately after that season, Hutchinson inked a huge deal with the Vikings – and he made it pay off, making four straight Pro Bowls and earning three first-team All-Pro nods while contributing to 1,000-yard seasons from Chester Taylor and Adrian Peterson. In fact, only once in Hutchinson's stellar 12-year career did a running back not rush for 1,000 yards behind him: Peterson fell 30 yards short in 2011 after suffering a knee injury in December that season.

Hutchinson was a first-round pick in 2001 by the Seahawks and played the first five seasons of his career in Seattle.

He then signed with Minnesota before the 2006 season and spent six seasons in Purple.

The seven-time Pro Bowler and five-time First-Team All-Pro selection was a leader on an offense that averaged 135 rushing yards per game during Hutchinson's time with the Vikings. He also helped Minnesota reach the 2009 NFC title game.

ESPN has Vikings 3rd in offseason power rankings

Experts and analysis at ESPN like where the Vikings stand at this point in the offseason.

More than 80 people at the network evaluated the current landscape of the NFL for their offseason power rankings, slotting the Vikings in the third spot.

ESPN wrote:

The 2018 offseason will be defined by the signing of Kirk Cousins. Consider this for a moment: The Vikings have been around since 1961, and they've never had a quarterback throw for at least 20 touchdowns in three consecutive seasons. Cousins has thrown at least 25 touchdown passes in three consecutive seasons.

Minnesota, which moved up a spot from ESPN's most-recent rankings on Feb. 4, was ranked behind New England and Philadelphia.

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