With the recent departure of Percy Harvin to the Seattle Seahawks, the Minnesota Vikings have turned their attention to finding a wide receiver—a slot receiver—in free agency or the upcoming NFL draft. Recent reports have linked the Vikings to wide receiver Danny Amendola, who last played with the St. Louis Rams in 2012. Even though the Vikings currently have Jarius Wright on their roster, the team is still looking for affordable, experienced players who can step in and help their young quarterback, Christian Ponder.
The Vikings have missed out on the big free agents so far this off-season, but the team still is searching for reliable options in the passing game. With Mike Wallace on his way to the Miami Dolphins, the team must adjust their off-season strategy for acquiring talented receivers who can play on the outside. Rumors have linked the team to players like Greg Jennings, but the price tag that Jennings is likely to command could scare off the Vikings. A more likely scenario would see the Vikings pursue an outside receiver with one of their two draft picks in the upcoming NFL Draft.
Even though he may not be able to stretch the field vertically or play on the outside, Amendola could still be an effective player for the Vikings at the right price. He has been plagued by injuries during his brief career in the NFL, but he has put up solid numbers when he has been healthy. During his four-year career, he has accounted for 196 receptions, 1,726 receiving yards and seven touchdowns. Last season, he appeared in 11 games and contributed 63 receptions, 666 yards and three touchdowns for the Rams.
The Philadelphia Eagles are said to also be interested in Amendola’s services, so the Vikings may have to move quickly if they are to secure the wide receiver’s services. It wouldn’t be in the Vikings’ best interest to throw a lot of money toward him in free agency with the presence of Wright on the roster. The team, however, could sign him for a reasonable contract with the idea of him stepping in as insurance to Wright or as a complementary player.
The bottom line is that the Vikings need to acquire as much talent at the receiver position as possible. This includes spending draft picks on talented receivers or paying free agents reasonable contracts to play meaningful roles on a playoff hopeful team. With the imminent re-signing of Jerome Simpson, the Vikings seem content with addressing their outside receiver via the draft. However, the team still is in need of talented receivers and Amendola might be the best fit at the best price.