Skip to main content

News | Minnesota Vikings –

Panel & Fans Vote on Vikings Best DBs from 2010-19

A new decade is upon us, as the Vikings have their sights set on 2020 and beyond. But before we fully turn to what's next, Vikings fans looked back at some of their favorite players from the previous decade.

Minnesota went 81-77-2in the seasons between 2010 and 2019, winning a pair of NFC North titles and making four total playoff appearances during the decade (2-4 in postseason play).

There isn't an All-Decade Team for the Minnesota Vikings, but if there was one, who would be on it for their play with the team between 2010-19? opened the topic for debate to a panel featuring "Voice of the Vikings" Paul Allen, analyst Pete Bercich, Mark Rosen and Kevin Seifert. Fans also were invited to vote online for their best players of the decade and choose up to three receivers. More than 5,000 ballots were cast for the top four defensive backs. One safety and three cornerbacks received the most votes.


Harrison Smith, safety, 2012-present

Fan Vote: 5,251 total votes

Stats from the Decade: 114 games, 113 starts, 658 total tackles, 37 tackles for loss, 13 sacks, 23 interceptions, franchise-record four interception returns for touchdowns, seven forced fumbles, eight fumble recoveries, 56 passes defensed; selected to five straight Pro Bowls (2016-2019) and was a First-Team All-Pro in 2017.

Thoughts from the Panel

"Harrison Smith … four interceptions [for] touchdowns … that's a cinch." — Paul Allen

"We should not let it go by that he's not only on this list, but is probably the best player of the decade, for me, for the Vikings when you think about the idea that he was drafted in the beginning and has been here this whole time. He's playing at an All-Pro level. And if you had to ask me, 'Who on this team is going to make the Hall of Fame?' I would say the likeliest is probably Harrison Smith. A high-level, All-Pro safety for a decade. A Hall-of-Fame player is one of the best players of his generation, and I think if you look at safeties of this generation, Harrison Smith is on there. In terms of big-picture, let's not let Harrison Smith go by without saying that." — Kevin Seifert

"Harrison Smith is one of the most versatile safeties in the league. He's not just a coverage guy or an in-the-box safety. He can blitz, he can do all these different things. And when he makes an interception, he can turn that into offense. That's what makes Harrison Smith unique among all the other safeties in the NFL, in that he can do everything. A quarterback can't ignore him when he walks to the line of scrimmage." — Pete Bercich

Antoine Winfield, cornerback, 2010-2012

Fan Vote: 4,287 total votes

Stats from the Decade: 37 games, 36 starts, 232 total tackles, 16 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, six interceptions, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, 1p passes defensed; selected to Pro Bowl for 2010 season

View images of the Vikings All-Decade Team defensive backs.

Thoughts from the Panel

"Antoine was near the end of his career, but when it came to impacting the game and having a feel for the ball and making things happen, I take him." — Paul Allen

Xavier Rhodes, cornerback, 2013-present

Fan Vote: 3,983 total votes

Stats from the Decade: 104 games, 97 starts, 372 total tackles, 15 tackles for loss, 10 interceptions, one interception return for a touchdown, three forced fumbles, 73 passes defensed; selected to three Pro Bowls (2016-2017, 2019) and was a First-Team All-Pro in 2017

Thoughts from the Panel

"Xavier Rhodes … for the amount of time he has played — and for as good as he was for as long as he was — for me, is a staple." — Allen

"Xavier Rhodes … he and Everson Griffen have benefited from Mike Zimmer being the head coach more than anyone else. I don't think either of them, in their initial campaigns, had great years … but Xavier went on to be an All-Pro. Has he struggled? Yeah, but let's not forget the things that he's done." — Bercich

Terence Newman, cornerback, 2015-2017

Fan Vote: 2,393 total votes

Stats from the Decade: 47 games, 33 starts, 135 total tackles, seven tackles for loss, five interceptions, 25 passes defensed

Thoughts from the Panel

"I went with Terence Newman. When you look at Terence Newman and Antoine Winfield, and then Xavier Rhodes, two of those three [Newman and Winfield] were nickel corners and not necessarily guys on the outside. I still think Terence Newman, in his short time here, did more in the red zone for this team defensively than any other DB. He was so unbelievably good and smart in the red zone, that without him, it would have changed some seasons a little bit." — Bercich

Also received votes…

Anthony Harris, safety, 2015-present

Stats from the Decade: 65 games, 31 starts, 180 total tackles, one tackle for loss, nine interceptions, one interception return for a touchdown, one forced fumble, four fumble recoveries, 21 passes defensed

Thoughts from the Panel

"My other safety is going to be Anthony Harris. Believe or it or not with Anthony, with 31 starts … he's the only safety, other than Harrison, with a defensive touchdown during the decade." — Allen

"Anthony Harris finally got his shot, and I think a lot of people around the league … a lot of neutral observers … recognize him as being one of the top two or three safeties in the whole league." — Seifert

"Anthony Harris would be my other safety. You have Andrew Sendejo … but I think Anthony Harris is a much more dynamic player." — Bercich

Andrew Sendejo, safety, 2011-2019

Stats from the Decade: 99 games, 60 starts, 370 total tackles, six tackles for loss, eight interceptions, one forced fumble, three fumble recoveries, 19 passes defensed

Captain Munnerlyn, cornerback, 2014-2016

Stats from the Decade: 47 games, 30 starts, 172 total tackles, one sack, eight tackles for loss, four interceptions, two forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, one fumble recovery for a touchdown, 12 passes defensed

Trae Waynes, cornerback, 2015-present

Stats from the Decade: 74 games, 53 starts, 247 total tackles, one sack, nine tackles for loss, seven interceptions, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, 42 passes defensed

Mackensie Alexander, cornerback, 2016-present

Stats from the Decade: 55 games, 10 starts, 100 total tackles, 4.5 sacks, nine tackles for loss, two interceptions, one fumble recovery, 21 passes defensed

Cedric Griffin, cornerback, 2010-2011

Stats from the Decade: 18 games, 16 starts, 75 total tackles, two tackles for loss, one interception, three forced fumbles, 10 passes defensed