The Vikings re-signed receiver Jerome Simpson to a one-year contract one day after agreeing to trade receiver Percy Harvin.
Simpson was an unrestricted free agent after signing a one-year contract worth up to $2 million with the Vikings last offseason. Simpson was suspended for the first three games of the season after violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy in 2011. A back injury shortly after he returned to action for the Vikings scuttled much of his potential.
In Simpson's first game following the suspension, he had four catches for 50 yards, but when he mysteriously woke up with a back injury the morning of the next game against the Tennessee Titans, he entered a frustrating and confounding stretch of the season. He tried to play against the Titans but didn't have any catches. The following week he was inactive, and then went the next eight games without another four-catch performance. It would take nearly two months, but Simpson finally started to get involved more heavily again with four catches against St. Louis on Dec. 16.
He said after the season that he felt he was getting back to full health in the final five games.
"I want to be here and make plays for this team and I'll do whatever possible that I can do. I felt I blocked, that I caught the ball and ran. I really want to be here," he said toward the end of the season. "I love my teammates and my owner and GM and everybody around here. … I just love being in this atmosphere. It's all love here and they trust in me and they know what I can do."
He finished with 26 catches on 51 targets for 274 yards in 2012 after posting a career-best 50 receptions for 725 yards and four touchdowns in his final season in Cincinnati.
"Jerome fits in. We'd love to have Jerome back," Vikings general manager Rick Spielman said at the Senior Bowl in January. "Jerome had the suspension and then the leg injury was pretty significant and then he started to get a lot better. I think Jerome, if we're able to look at potentially doing something with him, that he has the potential to really thrive if we were able to get something done with him."
Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.
Vikings re-sign WR Simpson to one-year deal
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