Vikings Named Top Landing Spot For 3-Time All Pro Defender

Adofo-Mensah, Vikings

Getty Kwesi Adofo-Mensah (R) and Kevin O'Connell of the Minnesota Vikings interact before the start of a preseason game against the San Francisco 49ers at U.S. Bank Stadium on August 20, 2022 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images)

The Minnesota Vikings can get more than serious across their front seven with just one additional free agent acquisition prior to the start of the regular season.

Ndamukong Suh remains a free agent with two weeks remaining until Week 1 officially kicks off, and the Vikings remain among the frontrunners to land the three-time All Pro defensive tackle.

Kristopher Knox of Bleacher Report on Wednesday, August 24, named Minnesota and the Las Vegas Raiders as the two most likely destinations for the NFL ironman.

Suh could still be a starter for most teams. At worst, he’d be a high-end rotational player on a defensive interior.

The Minnesota Vikings had “multiple conversations” with Suh early in the offseason, according to Tyler Dragon of USA Today. They would be [a] logical landing spot after their defense ranked 30th in yards allowed and 24th in points allowed last season.

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Suh’s Free Agent Price Tag Remains Sticking Point For Vikings

Ndamukong Suh

GettyDefensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, formerly of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, takes the field during a game against the San Francisco 49ers at Raymond James Stadium on September 8, 2019 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

Tashan Reed of The Athletic reported one week ago that Suh is continuing to push for a $9 million annual salary in contract negotiations, which has kept the Raiders at arm’s length to this point.

The Vikings face the same problem with just over $10.1 million in available salary cap space as of Thursday, per Over The Cap. Fitting Suh in is possible, but will rob Minnesota of flexibility to do much of anything else ahead of the season opener against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, September 11.

Still, there is a strong case to be made for Suh solidifying what could be one of the better front sevens in all of the NFL. The Vikings bookend their 3-4 scheme with Danielle Hunter and offseason addition Za’Darius Smith, the latter of whom was a Packer for the last three seasons.

Between them, Hunter and Smith have the potential to create a top pass rush in the league. As such, fortifying the middle with a player like Suh should have a lot of appeal to a franchise looking to make a big defensive leap from a down 2021 season.

Suh’s History of Availability Makes Him Worth The Money For Vikings

Ndamukong Suh

GettyDefensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, formerly of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, warms up prior to the NFC Wild Card Playoff Game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Raymond James Stadium on January 16, 2022 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

In fairness, the 35-year-old Suh is past his prime. But entering his 13th NFL season, he has been one of the most reliable players in league history.

Suh has missed just two starts in his entire career, both coming during his second campaign with the Detroit Lions in 2011. Suh hasn’t been named to a Pro Bowl in the last five years, though he won the honor five times before that.

Suh played a meaningful role for the Super Bowl Champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2020 and has proven himself consistently tough against both the run and the pass across his professional tenure.

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