One of the more intriguing signings this past off-season for the Minnesota Vikings was wide receiver Jerome Simpson. At the time he was suspended from the league for a drug arrest, and the Vikings were able to sign him for a fair price (1 year/$2 million). It all looked great on paper, once he served his three game ban of course. However at this point in the season, the ‘experiment’ has been a failure.
Currently, Simpson has only caught 11 balls for 137 yards, with no touchdowns. Not exactly the production the Vikings were hoping to get from a guy who’s unquestionably physically gifted.
Minnesota was hoping to rely on Simpson as a solid No. 2 option, and as a play-maker down the field. If nothing else, they were hoping he would open things up for Percy Harvin, but it just hasn’t panned out.
Simpson was dealing with a back injury earlier in the season, but he maintains that he’s healthy now.
While Simpson doesn’t look like a guy who’s injured out there, he doesn’t seem quite right either. His best game by far (pre-injury) was his season debut where he accumulated a third of his season production, and he just hasn’t gotten back to that level of play.
Some blame does fall on the shoulders of Christian Ponder, who no doubt has been bad at times this season. There have been several games where no one put up numbers in the receiving game, but even when Ponder has been on, he and Simpson just can’t seem to get on the same page.
This begs the question, will the Vikings bring Simpson back next year if he continues on his current pace? Right now I think that answer is no. I, and I’m sure the team, hasn’t seen anything that would make them want to re-sign him, simple as that.
Players with ‘off the field’ issues get second chances, and Simpson is getting his with Minnesota, but there just becomes a point when you’ve seen enough, and it’s no longer worth the risk.
Simpson better turn his season around quickly, or else he could be hoping for another team to give him a third chance.
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