According to Pro Football Talk, the Minnesota Vikings will be hosting free agent wide receiver Greg Jennings in Minnesota on Thursday.
This move comes days after the team traded away Percy Harvin and watched as Mike Wallace signed as a free agent with the Miami Dolphins. It is believed that Jennings will be seeking a contract around five years in length that would pay him an annual salary of $10 million.
While general manager Rick Spielman has remained consistent in his position that the Vikings will be built through the draft, the team seems to be pursuing Jennings aggressively.
The move makes sense for the team because of their severe lack of established wide receivers on their roster. Jennings would provide instant credibility to a lackluster receiving core, while giving quarterback Christian Ponder a reliable target to throw to. It remains to be seen, however, if Jennings is interested in playing for the Vikings with Ponder at quarterback.
Although Ponder displayed signs of improvement towards the end of the season, he seemed to hinder the Vikings ability to keep Harvin, who was outspoken about playing for an established quarterback and was thus traded away. Jennings may not want to leave the comfortable confines of playing with Aaron Rodgers, but the money may be too much to pass up.
Over his career, Jennings has accumulated 425 receptions, 6,537 receiving yards and 53 receiving touchdowns in 96 career games. At age 29, Jennings can still play at a high level. If it comes down to which team wants Jennings more, the Vikings should be able to overtake the Packers for that distinction.
The Packers are loaded at wide receiver with James Jones, Randall Cobb and Jordy Nelson. Jennings wouldn’t be guaranteed much playing time or looks with those receivers on the field, but Rodgers distributes the ball well enough that he would still get a fair share of targets.
In the Vikings offense, Jennings would immediately step in and become the main focus of their passing game. He, along with Kyle Rudolph and whoever the Vikings take at wide receiver in the draft, would be the basis for the Vikings passing offense.
It is imperative that the Vikings do not allow Jennings to leave Minnesota without having a signed contract in hand. If Jennings were to leave Minnesota without a contract, it can be assumed that he likely will return to Green Bay.
Green Bay would benefit from having Jennings return to their team, but the Vikings would be devastated if he didn’t come to theirs. They need an established receiver on their roster, or must face the consequences of having nine guys in the tackling box against Adrian Peterson every Sunday this fall.
Make the commitment, Spielman, and show Jennings the money.