About a month ago, I made predictions as to how the offensive roster would shake out, based on little more than expectations and my own perception. Following OTAs, there have been a few changes, a few more revelations and a few injuries. As such, I felt the Vikings’ post-OTA roster deserved another 53-man projection.
Prediction: QB1. Cousins QB2. Siemian
Nothing new at the top with the quarterbacks, but the question of Sloter remains. There a few signs pointing to the Vikings keeping three quarterbacks, not the least of which is the team’s history of injuries at the position. That being said, I believe there are too many opportunities to get valuable players at other positions on the roster, so Sloter will start on the practice squad.
Prediction: RB1. Murray RB2. Cook RB3. Thomas FB. Ham
The four names are the same as last projection with Thomas getting the edge over Boone and Brown. There is, however, a change at the top. Mike Zimmer this week gushed over Murray’s improvement from a year ago, which lends some credence to the idea that Cook will be eased in a bit. This does not matter all that much, as both will feature heavily and Cook will probably be number one before long.
Prediction: WR1A. Thielen WR1B. Diggs WR3. Treadwell WR4. Wright WR5. King WR6. Coley
In the last projection, I gave Wieneke the sixth slot due to his pass catching upside. However, I am making the switch to a player with more special teams potential in Coley due in part to the apparent improvement of Treadwell. Cousins and Zimmer have both liked what they have seen from the embattled third-year receiver and he has worked almost exclusively with the first team, so his spot and role seem fairly secure. Wieneke was, and to a degree still is, a guy who I thought could find some offensive snaps. But for now, he is a perfect fit on the practice squad as his size can provide a solid stand-in for some elite NFL receivers.
For my money, the final two spots are a toss up right now between King, Coley and Jones. Jones’ suspension is going to hurt his chances a bit, which could give Wieneke, Robertson, Beebe and Zylstra a real shot at sneaking in.
Prediction: TE1. Rudolph TE2. David Morgan TE3. Tyler Conklin
There are no changes from last time. Rudolph is the primary pass catcher, Morgan the solid blocker and Conklin the rookie with some nice potential. Bell is the dark horse, but he will likely need a bust from Conklin to earn a spot.
Prediction: LT. Reiff RT. Hill OT3. O’Neill
There are no changes here, either, in terms of who makes the roster. However, with Hill taking first team reps early on and O’Neill not really sniffing that unit, it seems clear the rookie will not be thrown into the fire anytime soon.
Prediction: LG. Easton RG. Remmers G3. Compton G4. Isidora G5. Gossett
Fans are a little wary of Remmers at right guard. For one, he has played tackle virtually his entire career, up until late 2017. He is a better tackle than a guard; the line essentially weakened two positions when Remmers bumped inside to allow Hill to start at tackle following Easton’s injury. But the fact is that in limited practice, Remmers and Hill took the first team reps on the right side of the line. For better or worse, that appears to be the plan for now. Remmers was one of, if not the most consistent linemen on the team a year ago, so this is not so much a question of his ability. Rather, this lineup seems like a placeholder. Everyone is waiting to see if O’Neill, Gossett and Isidora can reach their potential and become mainstays on the line.
Prediction: C. Elflein
Same deal as before. There is not much competition here for Elflein. Easton has been taking first team center reps with Elflein recovering from injury and Easton is listed as a center. But since he figures to start at guard, I regard him as such. Therefore, Elflein remains the only center to make the roster.
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