One of the best lineman is Jason Brown, who started at center for the Ravens. He'll only be 26 during this upcoming season, and he was a dominant run blocker in the middle. While the Ravens' running backs were constantly injured, they still had a very good running game, ranking 9th in DVOA. And they were the most successful when they ran up the middle, averaging 4.40 yards per carry, the 10th best in the NFL (and better than the Vikings, who were 19th with 4.15 yards). He can also play guard, which allows the Vikings to play John Sullivan at center if he earns it, upgrading two positions at once.
Another possibility for the Purple is Laveranues Coles. The Jets cut him loose yesterday in order to get under the cap, and acquiring him would add another quality target for Tarvaris (or Sage). Last year, he caught 70 passes for 836 yards and 8 touchdowns. He caught 61% of the passes thrown his way, and was 24th and 36th in DYAR and DVOA (which would have put him well ahead of Bobby Wade for second in both categories on the Vikings). He's not much of a deep threat (he only caught 2 passes over 40 yards), but he'd be a quality possession receiver and would complement Bernard Berrian well. He might end up back with the Jets, however, so I wouldn't get your hopes up about seeing him in Purple.
If you're looking for more players worth targeting, Yahoo has a list of the top 100 free agents (h/t Football Outsiders). Don't be suprised to see the Vikings try and bring in Khalif Barnes, Mark Tauscher or Jon Stinchcom to play right tackle. Niners Nation has a good breakdown of those three, and the other available free agent tackles if you want to know more. And don't forget the twelve Vikings who are unrestricted free agents this year.
- Jason Winter compares Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels at Defensive Indifference.
- Kevin Seifert puts Tarvaris in context. It's not pretty.
- Football Outsiders on the one part of the Combine that may actually be predictive. (And gives us a reason to be happy the Vikings' don't need a running back)
- Their court date is set for June 15th. The schedule hasn't been released yet, but if the Vikings have to play four games without the Williams Wall, they're going to be starting out the season yet another hole.