Return Man Setting Up Visit

The Vikings are expected to visit a kick returner in the coming days. See what this franchise record-holder has done in the recent past.

Running back Maurice Hicks is planning to visit the Minnesota Vikings sometime in the coming days, likely Sunday or Monday, according to a league source.

The 5-foot-11, 205-pound back has played in all but two games over the last three years with the San Francisco 49ers, but his main asset to the Vikings – seemingly set in the backfield with Adrian Peterson and Chester Taylor – would be his kick return abilities.

In the last four seasons with the 49ers, Hicks has returned 185 kickoffs for a 22.9-yard average. The last two seasons, he has averaged 23.8 yards on 63 returns (in 2007) and 25.1 yards on 57 returns (in 2006). His 1,428 return yards in 2006 set the franchise record for total yards on kickoff returns and then he bested that mark with 1,502 yards in 2007. The Vikings' franchise record is 1,345 yards by Buster Rhymes in 1985.

Hicks has also played on some special-teams coverage units in San Francisco.

As a running back, Hicks has been used sparingly, especially the last two seasons. He rushed 21 times for 117 yards in 2007 and 29 times for 82 yards in 2006. He got more action earlier in his 49ers career, carrying 59 times for 308 yards (5.2-yard average) in 2005 and a career-high 96 times for 362 yards (3.8) in 2004.

Hicks was originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the Chicago Bears in 2002 after becoming North Carolina A&T's all-time leading rusher with 2,812 yards. However, he was placed on the reserve/non-football injury list in his rookie year. In 2003, he went to camp with the Bears but was waived before the season began. He joined the 49ers in 2003.


  • The Vikings' trade of wide receiver Troy Williamson to the Jacksonville Jaguars became official on Friday. The Vikings will receive a sixth-round pick for Williamson.

  • Safety Madieu Williams signed his six-year, $33 million contract with the Vikings, according to the Pioneer Press. He got about $13 million in guarantees.

  • The Jaguars also signed wide receiver Jerry Porter on Friday. Porter reportedly inked a six-year, $30 million contract, with $10 million in guaranteed money, according to NFL Network. While the Vikings are visiting with Bears receiver Bernard Berrian today, Porter was a receiver the Vikings were interested in, but Berrian was receiving precedent from the Vikings.

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