The Vikings made their final roster moves to get down to the regular season 53 man limit, and there are a few surprises.
First, the team traded 2nd year offensive lineman Nat Dorsey to the Cleveland Browns for 4th year guard/center Melvin Fowler. Fowler’s stated 14 games in his four-year career and was a 3rd round pick for the Browns in 2002.
I know next to nothing about Fowler, but it sounds like a great deal to me, especially after watching Dorsey last night. Damn, that was ugly; when he wasn’t getting callled for holding, he was having his lunch handed to him by whoever lined up against him. We clearly need depth at center and we gained two years experience in the deal. The only question is whether Fowler is thought of as a potential starter, or a backup. I’m guessing the Vikes would love to see him take the starting role because at 6′ 3", 305 lbs, he’s a very big man.
The team put DT Steve Martin on injured reserve (he limped off the field last night) and put one of my favorites, receiver Aaron Hosack, on the reserve, non-footbal injury list, which means we will potentially see both in purple the future.
It’s official. The Viking actually only got LB Napoean Harris and receiver Troy Williamson for Randy Moss, as they released the last piece of the Moss trade, 7th round defensive back Adrian Ward. Former Minnesota Gopher defensive back Ukee Dozier and safety Will Hunter were both cut.
Linebacker Heath Farwell was cut when it appeared he may have locked up a spot on the strength of his special teams play–he just always seemed to be in on tackles while covering kicks–but 2nd year man Rod Davis‘ bone-crunching performance last nght might have cost Farwell his spot.
Defensive linemen Earl Cochran and Matt Mitrione were both cut.
Both six foot five receiver Chris Jones and hometown favorite, speedy receiver Ryan Hoag from Gustavus Adolphus were cut. No surprises there.
Offensive linemen Brandon Newton, Chris Janke, and Shannon Snell (who at least looked better than Nat Dorsey last ngiht) were cut.
Defensive Coordinator Ted Cotrell son, injured TE T.J. Cotrell was cut along with fellow tight ends Sean Berton and, damn, my favorite, the six foot eight Richard Angulo. I gotta admit that Angulo did not help his own cause this preseason by being injured and last night, not catching the over the shoulder toss by Brad Johnson.
The team unloaded running backs ReShard Lee (and no big surprise; they picked him up only a few days ago), 2nd year man Butchie Wallace, and Adimchinobe Echemandu, who, I thougth, had perhaps shown enough to stay with the team.
The team released kickers Travis Dorsch and Aaron Elling. No surprise there. But after the shaky performance Darren Bennett put on last night, perhaps the team will work out Sean Landetta.
Now we’ll have to see who makes it through waivers and gets stuffed on the practice squad.