The Minnesota Vikings are strong just about everywhere as they look to finish the job in 2018. But their offensive line is falling apart.
Center Pat Elflein is still on the PUP list as he recovers from offseason ankle and shoulder surgeries. Right guard Mike Remmers is recovering from an ankle injury he picked up during the team’s fourth practice. Now they’ve lost starting left guard Nick Easton, who had been filling in for Elflein at center, to a neck injury. However, it’s not supposed to be career-ending according to ESPN’s Courtney Cronin.
“Nick Easton has neck surgery this morning, and his season is likely over…”
A little over an hour later, it was made official.
“Mike Zimmer announces Nick Easton will go on IR.”
This certainly does put the Vikings in quite a bind. All three of those players are starters. Picking up the odd guy here and there is possible, but assembling a brand new offensive line on short notice? Highly improbable. Even if a team is able to do so, it’d be foolish to expect a good product. Without Easton, they simply do not have a starter at left guard right now.
Head coach Mike Zimmer isn’t willing to quit that easily, though. After all, adversity is just part of the game.
“We’re looking at all free-agent areas, really,” Zimmer says. “That’s what those guys do at night. They come in here and watch — heck they watch other teams, they watch guys on the street. So yeah.”
In the meantime, the Vikings are coming off a season in which they finished one game away from the Super Bowl. They still boast the best defense in the league and have added Kirk Cousins to an offense that finished top 10 last season.
But a lot of that matters less if their offensive line doesn’t hold up.