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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Vikings want to keep adding to offensive, defensive lines

By Matthew Coller

The Minnesota Vikings saw an impressive jump in offensive line play from 2016 to 2017. They not only protected the passer better but helped improve the Vikings from the league’s worst rushing attack to the seventh best.

Speaking with the Twin Cities media on Wednesday, GM Rick Spielman said the team wants to keep adding pieces to both lines.

“I believe strongly that you have to keep investing in the offensive and defensive line,” Spielman said. “With the style that we play, with the philosophy that coach Zimmer wants to play.”

The Vikings added Riley Reiff and Mike Remmers in free agency last year and drafted Pat Elflein in the third round. All three moves were a hit for Spielman last year. In free agency and the draft, the Vikings will be looking to fill at least one guard position. Their search will include focusing on players who fit what new offensive coordinator John DeFilippo wants to do.

”The thing that is very clear…is what are the traits we are looking for in an offensive line,” Spielman said. “In Pat [Shurmur’s] philosophy, when we started running some outside zone, we were much more effective this year on screen passes because we put a point of emphasis on different traits than we may have in the past.”

Before the start of the regular season the Vikings released Alex Boone because he was not a fit with Shurmur’s scheme.

In this year’s draft, there are a handful of first-round prospects who could be available when the Vikings pick, including guards Will Hernandez (UTEP) and Isaiah Wynn (Georgia) and tackles Orlando Brown (Oklahoma) and Conor Williams (Texas).

”There are some very good offensive linemen in this draft,” Spielman said. “What we have to determine as we go forward now…is, does he fit with what you’re going to require him to do?”

The Vikings also have openings on the defensive line with both Tom Johnson and Shamar Stephen set to hit the free agent market.

The post Vikings want to keep adding to offensive, defensive lines appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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