It’s safe to say the Minnesota Vikings will miss having wide receiver Sidney Rice in their passing game if he manages to stay healthy and return to his 2009 form with the Seattle Seahawks–which was his magical season playing with Brett Favre in which he finished with 83 catches for 1,312 yards with eight touchdowns. Throughout the offseason, it seemed like the Vikings would put up a fight to re-sign Rice–but that apparently wasn’t the case.
In a recent interview with the Pioneer Press, Rice discussed how he was heavily pursued by the Seahawks once the lockout ended and their efforts to sign the former Pro Bowler played a major role in his decision to leave Minnesota. From what Rice claims, it seems like the Vikings failed to put much effort towards negotiating a new deal for the wideout–with the only phone call he received was one from head coach Leslie Frazier–while the Seahawks had numerous members of the organization call and express their strong interest in bringing him to Seattle.
“If you hear from them throughout the rest of the season telling you they are going to be in touch, are going to negotiate and it never happens, you’ve got to wonder – do they really want me there or not?” Rice said courtesy of the Pioneer Press. “I just didn’t feel it….It came down to Seattle showing me they wanted me to be a part of the program.”
Shortly after the lockout ended, Rice signed a five-year, $41 million with the Seahawks and will most likely be catching passes from Tarvaris Jackson–who was also his teammate in Minnesota. His 2010 season may have been a disappointment due to the fact that he was recovering from hip surgery most of the season, but the Vikings know how much of a threat Rice can be when healthy. If he does manage to stay healthy and return to his 2009 form–there’s a good chance the Vikings will regret not making more of an effort to keep Rice around.
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