By , D.J. Foster
Published September 12, 2015
Throw just about everything we learned about the Vikings last year out the window. Adrian Peterson is back and ready to reassume his role as the backfield's bell-cow, which should provide more single-coverage on the outside for Charles Johnson and newly acquired Mike Wallace, while also making life a bit easier on Teddy Bridgewater. That being said, AP is still the only guy we really want to invest in here.
Bye Week: 5
Rookie Impacts: Stefon Diggs (WR)
The Vikings are going to be a run-first offense with AP, so it's hard to get too excited about a rookie receiver here. He's only worth monitoring in case of injuries or if he eventually steals the slot role away from Jarius Wright.
Quarterback: Teddy Bridgewater
Bridgewater had one of the better "actual football" campaigns from a rookie quarterback we've seen in a long time, limiting his mistakes and turnovers while showing a pretty well-rounded skill-set as a passer. Still, his role will be to manage the game more than anything else, making him nothing more than a middle of the road QB2 going into next season. He'll be turned loose one day, but we're probably not there yet.
Running back: Adrian Peterson
It's not hard to imagine a scenario where Peterson will end up being the consensus top pick in the draft once again by the time preseason rolls around. Even though he's the dreaded age of 30 and has a ton of miles racked up over the years, Peterson is a freak of nature with no competition for carries and a chip on his shoulder. It's understandably scary since he missed all of last season, but Peterson's upside is a little higher than Eddie Lacy's, his workload should be substantially bigger than Jamaal Charles's, and he may not miss games like Le'Veon Bell.
Running back: Jerrick McKinnon
Assuming Peterson stays healthy, it's McKinnon who should share more of the load as a passing down back as opposed to the bowling ball-ish Matt Asiata. In limited action last year, McKinnon averaged 4.8 YPC and caught 27 balls, so there's PPR appeal if something happens to All-Day in Norv Turner's offense.
Wide receiver: Charles Johnson
It seems likely that someone will reach on Johnson in the early-middle rounds, assuming they are getting Minnesota's WR1 with an emerging quarterback. While that may all be technically true, Johnson hasn't really displayed the chops of a top receiver, and the addition of Mike Wallace and a healthy Kyle Rudolph in a run-heavy offense could sap his appeal a bit.
Wide receiver: Mike Wallace
WHERE'S WALLACE? He's in Minnesota now, where the speedster will provide the Vikings with a home-run threat on the outside. Wallace isn't a great target in PPR leagues, but he could provide some bang for his draft spot with the deep ball in standard leagues. Don't expect the numbers he put up in Pittsburgh or even Miami, but he could end up providing similar production to someone like DeSean Jackson this upcoming season.
Wide receiver: Jarius Wright
Wright should be manning the slot for the Vikings, which could yield some decent results. Again, this isn't a passing game you necessarily want to target, and Wright only had 42 catches last season. It's possible he carves out a bigger role, but his potential is capped.
Tight end: Kyle Rudolph
Norv Turner has a history of turning talented tight ends into big time producers, but Rudolph will have to find a way to stay on the field first. Although he flashed potential back in 2012 when he caught 9 touchdowns, Rudolph has missed 15 games over the last two seasons. If he somehow stays completely healthy throughout preseason, there's big sleeper appeal with AP opening up playaction over the middle.
Placekicker: Blair Walsh
What are we looking for from our fantasy kickers? High-powered offenses, and big legs. Walsh at least has the latter working in his favor, as he's shown the ability to hit from 50-60 yards in previous seasons.
Team defense (D/ST):
Minnesota's defense should be off your radar on draft day. They have a relatively tough start to the season in the first five weeks (@SF, DET, SD, DEN, BYE) and didn't generate turnovers at a high enough rate to warrant consideration otherwise.
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