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Vikings free agency top 30 countdown, Part 4 (15-11)

With nearly $60 million in salary cap space, the Minnesota Vikings could be active in free agency this year. In the weeks leading up to the free agent period beginning on March 14, we will look at the 30 best available players who would fit the Vikings’ needs.

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15 – DT, Beau Allen

Oct 26, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Beau Allen (94) against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Cardinals defeated the Eagles 24-20. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Key stat: Sixth best Run Stop Percentage in the NFL

Why he fits:

Even if the Vikings really like 2017 fourth-round pick Jaleel Johnson and/or want to bring back Shamar Stephen or Tom Johnson, they should still be looking at good players at the DT position. Allen was a rotational player for the Eagles, playing 142 run snaps and 264 pass snaps this season. He rated the best UFA in run Run Stop Percentage and fourth in Pass Rush Productivity. Allen only had one sack but picked up 19 hurries. His Pressures Per Snap was slightly higher than Tom Johnson.

14 – Nickel Robey-Coleman

May 22, 2017; Thousand Oaks, CA, USA; Los Angeles Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman (23) during organized team activities at Cal Lutheran University. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Key stat: 77.5 rating against on throws into his coverage

Why he fits:

The undersized nickel corner ranked in the top 20 by PFF grades at his position this year. He’s grown into a reliable run defender and tackler after struggling against the run early in his career. His 0.80 yards allowed per snap in slot coverage was the fifth best in the NFL (per PFF). If the Vikings want a proven player in the slot and don’t bring back Terence Newman, Robey-Coleman could be an option.

13 – QB, Josh McCown

Key stat: 104.9 rating on deep passes, 7.4 yards per attempt

Why he fits:

If the Vikings plan to bring back Teddy Bridgewater and need a backup who can step in and lead them to the playoffs (a la 2017 Case Keenum), McCown might be that backup. As a starter last season he performed admirably, showing a surprisingly good touch on downfield throws. The veteran QB is widely respected and has past experience with John DeFilippo.

12 – TE, Tyler Eifert

Nov 20, 2016; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert (85) against the Buffalo Bills at Paul Brown Stadium. The Bills won 16-12. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Key stat: 13 touchdowns in 2015

Why he fits:

Injuries have slowed down the former Bengals tight end, but when he’s been in the lineup, Eifert is a tremendous weapon. He’s 6-foot-6 and has terrific athleticism. If the Vikings are looking for another weapon alongside Kyle Rudolph and David Morgan, he could be the downfield tight end option they have been searching for by drafting players like Bucky Hodges and MyCole Pruitt. The price tag should be reasonable considering his recent injury history.

11 – G, Justin Pugh

Oct 1, 2017; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Giants offensive guard Justin Pugh (67) blocks as Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive end Noah Spence (57) rushes during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Key stat: Ranked as a top-20 run-blocking guard in both 2015 and 2016.

Why he fits:

In the search for improvement on the offensive line, Pugh is a versatile veteran who has proven he can be above average at guard or tackle. He ranked as a top-20 run-blocking guard in both 2015 and 2016 per PFF ratings, but battled injuries throughout 2017.


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