Caplan Free Agency Chat Transcript

What are the Vikings' top positions of need, and which players slated for free agency would make a good fit with the Vikings' systems on offense and defense? VikingUpdate.com subscribers fired those questions and many more at NFL reporter and Scout.com expert Adam Caplan. See what he had to say about a number of interesting prospects.

adamcaplan: Let's get started.

Proudhorn: We (I think) want a DE - who would be the best for our D scheme?

adamcaplan: DE-Justin Smith/CIN/UFA - High motor player, good against the run, decent pass rusher. CIN may not re-sign him.

javik316: Hey Adam, what are the Vikings' top priorities in the offseason?

adamcaplan: WR, RG, RT, DE, CB.

davev: Eric Steinbach, RG from the Bengals, would be a good fit.

adamcaplan: Bengals want to keep Steinbach, but if he's not signed or franchised, MIN should go get him.

javik316: Any chance we see Jeff Garcia in purple?

adamcaplan: JAV: Eagles want him back and he wants to be back. But Garcia really hasn't played as well as most think. They're running the ball well and their defense is playing much better.

kajjansiblackmamba: Adam, with WR being a high priority for the Vikes, which FA WR would be the best fit here?

adamcaplan: D.J. Hackett-RFA/SEA. Great RAC.

adamcaplan: I've been pushing him for almost a year now.

kajjansiblackmamba: Thank you, Adam.

vikingsteve: Adam, do you see the Vikings looking strongly at safety with word Sharper may not return?

adamcaplan: Safety is something you can pick up late in free agency. Usually.

viking1184: Any chance Randy Moss comes back?

adamcaplan: Randy? Zero.

javik316: Do you see Daniel Graham on the Vikings' list of top priorities.

adamcaplan: Jav: I'm told he wants to go and be more of a receiver than blocker.

kajjansiblackmamba: Will Randy be in Oakland next season?

adamcaplan: KAJ: Possible but less than 50-50.

vikingsteve: Do you feel they should try to hold on to Sharper?

adamcaplan: VS: He's an OK stopgap.

HireLurts: Childress didn't seem to give Jim Kleinsasser an opportunity in the passing game. Do you think he'll be back and are there any athletic, pass-catching tight ends in the draft?

adamcaplan: HL: Kleinsasser is strictly seen as a blocker

davev: How about Kevin Kaesviharn, safety from the Bengals? Local guy ... thoughts on him?

adamcaplan: DAVE: KK is a good backup safety, that's it. Good story though, was teaching before CIN signed him.

VikingsY2K: If you were the Vikings, who would be your top 3 FA priorities?

adamcaplan: Y2K: WR, RG, DE.

adamcaplan: WR-Drew Bennett/UFA/TEN is also someone who fits their offense.

adamcaplan: My sense is MIN will bring in two impact WRs.

HireLurts: Dwayne Jarret or Tedd Ginn Jr. ...who would you take?

adamcaplan: HL: Ask me as we get closer to the draft.

javik316: Do you think they are interested in Hackett?

adamcaplan: JAV: I would imagine they are looking at him as well as any upside UFA or RFA WRs.

VikingsY2K: I think Drew Bennett would be a perfect fit.

HireLurts: Was Artis Hicks that bad that RG is #2 priority?

adamcaplan: HL: Hicks is a backup at this point, they know it.

rclick3059: What's wrong with RT Marcus Johnson? Is he not a good fit?

adamcaplan: RC: That's his position, but he regressed for whatever reason. He had a lot of promise coming in, but has taken a step back. Not good.

kajjansiblackmamba: Adam, any legs to the rumor that Clinton Portis is going to be traded to the Lions?

adamcaplan: KA: Makes no sense, and Kevin Jones should ready for the start of the season from what I'm hearing of late. Why would DET want an injury-prone RB?

HireLurts: Childress took Billy McMullen, Artis Hicks, and now signed Stephen Spach, all former Eagles backups. I though Rick Spielman was calling the shots.

adamcaplan: HL: Spach is a practice dummy, nothing more. That's a phrase for a warm body.

adamcaplan: McMullen was brought in because he knows the system.

Proudhorn: The percentage of ex-Eagles players signed is very low - look at all the roster moves this season. It's a non-issue.

rclick3059: Can Ryan Cook play RT?

adamcaplan: RC: Yes, Cook can. I'm interested to see what they do with him.

javik316: Adam, do you think that Jackson will be the starting QB on opening day next year?

adamcaplan: JAV: Right now, yes.

adamcaplan: Brooks Bollinger is a good #2, not a starter.

VikingsY2K: Do the Vikings plan on Chad Greenway starting next year? No one knows if he can play at this level.

adamcaplan: VIK: Coming off that type of injury, it's too early to speculate.

HissingBoomslang: Due to the slim pickings in free agency, and the rare specimen at the position, do you feel that the Vikings could be interested in trading up for Calvin Johnson -- particularly if he was still available around pick #4 or 5? I've also heard from many Falcon fans about the Falcons trading Vick to the Raiders, then picking Calvin. Have you heard anything along those lines? Thank you.

adamcaplan: HIS: I can't respond to message board rumors, but I can tell you Johnson will have a lot of interest from teams picking in the top 15 who want a WR since free agency is weak for that position.

VikingsY2K: Any interest in Lance Briggs or Adalius Thomas?

adamcaplan: Y2: Can't see Briggs because they have a WLB in Henderson who they just extended.

adamcaplan: Thomas would be a good fit, but he'll get a lot of interest. He can play SLB, DE, and San Fran is going to likely make a run at him.

HissingBoomslang: Adalius would be sweet.

javik316: How far away do you think the Vikes are from making a run at the division?

adamcaplan: Jav: 2-3 years if Tomlin stays. If he leaves, that could be an issue. He's getting the most out of some marginal players. His scheme is working very well. Offense is a big problem, and Brad Childress knows it. The personnel he has in certain areas is inferior.

javik316: They need some stability at D coordinator. I think they have had 4 in 4 years.

HireLurts: His scheme was predictable and conservative. Will he adjust in year 2?

VikingsY2K: Based on the salary cap, who are likely to be some of the big names around the NFL that are cut?

adamcaplan: Y2K: Too early to say. We'll get a better idea around NFL combine or before.

Proudhorn: Speaking of WRs - who is the best fit for us in your opinion?

adamcaplan: Proud: D. Bennett, D. Hackett, Kevin Curtis.

HissingBoomslang: Adam, where do you see David Carr playing next fall?

adamcaplan: HISS: HOU. They're locked in for two more seasons.

viking1184: Will the Vikings be active in free agency and, if so, who do you see them signing?

adamcaplan: 1184: Too early to say what players, but look for them to sign two WRs.

HireLurts: What was your thought of the decision to cut Marcus Robinson?

adamcaplan: HL: I knew it was coming. Childress didn't want him around. That was very clear, and Tice also had issues with Robinson.

viking1184: Will Troy Williamson be a Viking next season?

adamcaplan: VI: I can't imagine him dropping more passes. He drops one out of every three that he gets thrown to him.

NorthernVike: Do you see the Vikes going after a RG, RT or DE?

adamcaplan: NV: All three.

davev: One thing I noticed during Childress's press conference is when he refers to the defense he says "they" and then when he refers to the offese it's "us." Doesn't seem to be a leader in that sense.

adamcaplan: DAV: He seems himself as running the offense.

dadevike: OK, I have to ask ... any chance Randy Moss comes back? Jerry Porter?

adamcaplan: DAD: I would be shocked if either are Vikings. Porter is a dog, and I don't mean in the good sense.

HissingBoomslang: lmao.

kajjansiblackmamba: Hahaha.

VikingsY2K: Any interest on the Vikings' part in Nate Clements or Asante Samuel since Fred Smoot will be cut?

adamcaplan: VIK: Clements will cost a lot, Samuel less. I'd take Samuel, more upside and getting better.

vikingsteve: Samual can play both CB and S.

adamcaplan: VIK: No one would sign him to play S, not even a consideration. You don't sign a player like him to play S.

HissingBoomslang: Do you think that the Vikes might try to trade Smoot?

adamcaplan: HIS: They may not be able to move him. He's not a good player and everyone knows it. They'll likely cut Smoot. MIN overpaid for an average player.

javik316: Ya, that was disappointing.

viking1184: Will Napoleon Harris be back?

adamcaplan: VIK: 50-50, he's a marginal starter.

HissingBoomslang: Who are some nice established vet O-Line free agents that the Vikes could be interested in to solidify the line, and/or depth-wise?

VikingsY2K: As far as O-Line, any interest in Eric Steinbach, Pork Chop Womack or Kris Dielman?

adamcaplan: HIS: Eric Steinbach/G/CIN, Cooper Carlisle/G/DEN.

adamcaplan: I'd pass on Womack -- injury prone in a big way.

javik316: Any other tight ends the Vikes will look into other than Graham.

adamcaplan: JAV: Eric Johnson/TE/SF, great pass catcher. Good WCO TE, but does get hurt a lot. But FA TEs are pretty weak overall.

HissingBoomslang: I agree, and Vernon Davis makes him available now.

adamcaplan: I wrote for Scout prior to the draft that he would be gone in 2007.

davev: Worst thing to happen to the Vikes would be to lose Tomlin ... hopefully he'll be head coach of the Vikes after next year's terrible season.

HireLurts: Why didn't Childress incorporate Mewelde Moore more than he did? He provided more big plays in limited opportunities than anyone?

adamcaplan: HL: I asked their former RB coach that a few weeks ago, and he was puzzled as well.

NorthernVike: Chester Taylor had way too many carries.

kajjansiblackmamba: Adam, the big question. Is Michael Vick going to be with the Falcons come opening weekend?

adamcaplan: KA: Yes, pretty much a lock.

VikingsY2K: Clements and Antione Winfield would be a nice combo (Cedric Griffin as nickel back).

javik316: Adam, who do you go with, the Pats or the Chargers?

adamcaplan: JAV: All home teams again, I'm nuts.

javik316: I agree.

viking1184: Do you think the Vikes will bring in a veteran QB, such as Jake Plummer or Drew Bledsoe?

adamcaplan: 1184: I say no on those QBs. HOU may sign Plummer.
They want a veteran to push Carr.

davev: What's the percentage of losing Tomlin? Gut feel?

adamcaplan: DAVE: Next year, he will be hot prospect for sure.

HireLurts: Do you think Erasmus James can come back and be an impact pass rusher?

adamcaplan: HL: They have to think he won't be a starter, third end then let's see how he does in camp coming off the injury.

VikingK: Any chance of Calvin Johnson dropping to 7?

adamcaplan: VIK: Let's see what happens at the combine and private workouts.

VikingK: Most of the teams in front of them don't need a WR.

HireLurts: Is Marcus Johnson on his way out, or will they have him compete for starting RT?

adamcaplan: HL: My sense is he'll be given a chance to compete.

javik316: Adam, any chance Pete Carrol goes to Miami?

HissingBoomslang: Any news about Charles Gordon, and an increased role next year?

adamcaplan: JAV: Unlikely at this point. Gordon dime.
I did find it interesting that Carroll said the job had everything he was looking for.

javik316: Probably trying to get USC to give him a new deal.

viking1184: What other veteran QBs are out there?

davev: Adam, excellent knowledge. Look forward to hearing more from you on PA and Dubay.

adamcaplan: DAVE: I'll be on Sirius on Saturday with them, Cohen probably Friday on KFAN with them.

HireLurts: Childress talks "guys for his system" so much. Which receiver coming out fits the WCO the best?

adamcaplan: HIRE: We'll do draft talk next month after I get back from the Senior Bowl.

VikingsY2K: I'd take Calvin Johnson or Jarrett right now. If Jamarcus Russell was there at 7, he'd be worth a long look too.

adamcaplan: Y2K: Russell may go #1.

dadevike: Adam, is Childress committed to the zone blocking scheme? And do we have the players for it?

adamcaplan: DADE: You have to have athletic offensive linemen. Not sure if all of them are.

VikingsY2K: Good point. Thanks for all of your time Adam. Keep up the great job!

rclick3059: Will Tank start at S in 2007?

adamcaplan: RC: Too early to say, but that's a tough injury to come back from.

javik316: Thanks, Adam.

NorthernVike: Cheers.

adamcaplan: All: We'll do this again soon.

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