Vikings Notebook: Newcomers and Alumni

New Vikings fullback Tony Richardson is highly regarded in Kansas City, where the Chiefs signed his paychecks for 11 years, and one writer's opinion is just the latest proof of that. Plus, we check in with some former Vikings in new locales and wrap up the notes from the Vikings' offseason program.

Of all the Vikings' changes being discussed frequently during the offseason, one signing that could make a major difference and hasn't been discussed frequently is that of fullback Tony Richardson.

The Vikings will use a fullback as a major part of their offense for the first time since the late 1990s, and getting an accomplished one like Richardson from the Chiefs was an underrated move … at least underrated in Minnesota. In Kansas City, at least one beat writer listed the loss the Richardson as the single biggest offseason move.

"OK, so T-Rich was getting up in years (34), and his role was being reduced after 11 seasons with the Chiefs," the story goes. "Still, for little more than a song the Chiefs could have retained an emotional and spiritual locker room leader who wanted to end his career in Kansas City, and who provided a much-needed mentor to often moody youngster Larry Johnson. K.C. will miss T-Rich as much off the field as they'll miss his blocking on it."

  • According to a report out of Oakland, former Viking Randy Moss is only part of a moody receiving corps for the Raiders, but Aaron Brooks, acquired by Oakland this offseason isn't concerned about connecting with his wideouts.

    He professes no worries regarding his ability to satisfy three ultra-talented but moody receivers in Randy Moss, Jerry Porter and Ronald Curry.

    "My relationship with my receivers has always been a very tight, close-knit relationship," Brooks said. "I've never had problems with my receivers. They do what they're supposed to do and I try and get them the ball. I'm pretty good with players and wonderful with coaches."

  • The offseason moves might not be over for former Viking Michael Bennett.

    The Texans still have their eyes on New Orleans running back Michael Bennett, who the Saints are interested in trading. New Orleans is in no hurry, though. Reggie Bush missed some of the offseason with injuries and Deuce McAllister is still rebounding from last season's injury, leaving Bennett to take the majority of repetitions in practice with the first team.

    "We've talked to them over and over again," Texans head coach Gary Kubiak said. "At this point, they aren't just going to let their starting running back go."

  • WR Troy Williamson, who had been sidelined since undergoing surgery in May to remove an abscess from his left hip, took part in last week's minicamp. "I'm doing everything that everybody else is doing," said Williamson, who could provide the Vikings with a much-needed vertical threat in their offense.

  • WR Koren Robinson missed the last few OTA workouts and the final minicamp so he could be in North Carolina with his son, who was recovering from surgery.

  • P Chris Kluwe (knee) did not end up doing any punting during the offseason as he recovered from surgery. That gave rookie free agent John Torp an opportunity to show what he could do.

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