The loss of wide receiver Percy Harvin was sure to create ripple effects for the Minnesota Vikings, who now have a gaping hole in their roster.
In hopes of providing some short-term insurance at the position, the Vikings have re-signed wide receiver Jerome Simpson to another one-year deal. The move comes as quite a surprise considering his lack of production last season.
Signed last offseason to a one-year, prove-it deal, Simpson was a major disappointment in his first year with the Vikings while battling injuries. Throughout the 2012 campaign, Simpson managed only 26 receptions for 274 yards while starting in 10 of 12 appearances. He was brought in to provide a deep threat for the Minnesota passing attack, but failed to catch a single touchdown and managed only 10.5 yards per catch.
For the time being, Simpson is lightly penciled in as the Vikings’ No. 1 receiver. His name will move down the depth chart shortly, though, as the Vikings are expected to address the position via free agency. They’re expected to be players for free agents such as Greg Jennings or Mike Wallace, and have even shown interest in restricted free agent Victor Cruz.
The Vikings could also address the position with one of their two first-round picks in this April’s upcoming NFL Draft. Slotted at No. 23 and No. 25, Minnesota could wait and see who falls into their lap or use a combination of their ten available picks to move up and nab someone like Cordarrelle Patterson.
Assuming the Vikings address the position aggressively this offseason, Simpson might not last through the preseason. He was a huge letdown in 2012, and likely hasn’t made any major strides heading into 2013.
For now, though, Simpson is the best thing the Vikings have out wide.