Mike Zimmer loves Anthony Harris, but says safety isn’t most important position on D

Getty Images

Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said on Wednesday that he expects defensive end Everson Griffen to return to the team for the 2020 season, but it doesn’t sound like he has the same outlook for safety Anthony Harris.

Harris is set for unrestricted free agency after starting 14 games and leading the league in interceptions last season. Zimmer said he appreciated the way the five-year vet handled the job, but it sounds like paying Harris ranks somewhere down the list of priorities in Minnesota this offseason.

“I love Anthony. If he doesn’t come back, I think he’s earned everything he’s got, but if you put up the positions most important on defense it’s probably not going to be safety,” Zimmer said, via Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

The Vikings would have fewer tough choices to make about re-signing their own free agents if they were in a better cap situation, but the realities of their position is that they won’t be able to bring everyone back. It looks like Harris, who is No. 15 on our list of the league’s top free agents, may fall into the category of those moving on.

16 responses to “Mike Zimmer loves Anthony Harris, but says safety isn’t most important position on D

  1. I sincerely hope this is a head-fake on the part of the Vikings, because Harris is one whole heck of a lot more valuable than Everson Griffen. There is significant talent waiting in the wings to take Griffen’s place, but you don’t just let a talent you have developed, one who led the league in INTs last season, walk away.

  2. Sounds like Waynes is getting the franchise tag.

    Bummer about Harris. He made a lot of splash plays.

  3. If the Vikings could get A.Winfield jr in the draft to replace Harris I would be good with that. Harris’s run support & tackling leaves a lot to be desired.

  4. I’m fine with letting Harris go if they can manage to draft Antoine Winfield Jr. in the second round.

  5. edenprairieballer says:
    February 26, 2020 at 4:29 pm

    Sounds like Waynes is getting the franchise tag.
    _________

    You’re kidding, I hope. I can’t think of a move that would make less sense than that one.

  6. Harris was awesome this year, you could see he was getting really good even last year. But fwippel clearly doesn’t understand how salary caps work. Griffen dropped his contract likely to come back cheaper and with a reduced cap hit. Harris is going to demand a very rich contract that the Vikings have no way of matching with their salary cap issues.

  7. Also Antione Winfield Jr would be an awesome pick. But I see them going cornerback. Maybe Steffon’s brother Trevon! otherwise maybe another lineman, but it seems pretty clear it’ll be CB unless some really valuable player drops.

  8. The most important defensive positions these days are: (1) CB, (2) rush DE, and (3) cover LB — particularly in this case with the Vikes already having a pro bowl SS. The Vike’s CBs stunk last year, and that should be their focus. Even so, I suspect Everson at this stage of his career can be signed for 33% of what Harris will make as the top rated free agent safety.

  9. As badly as we need O line, I’d love to see them go Trevon Diggs in R1 and ‘Toine Jr. in R2. I especially want Diggs because it’d probably help keep Stephon around.

  10. Do the Opposite says:
    February 26, 2020 at 4:54 pm
    edenprairieballer says:
    February 26, 2020 at 4:29 pm

    Sounds like Waynes is getting the franchise tag.
    _________

    You’re kidding, I hope. I can’t think of a move that would make less sense than that one.
    __________________________________

    Not kidding at all. Rhodes and Alexander are likely gone and Mike Hughes has a serious neck injury. The Vikings are all of sudden dangerously thin at corner. Waynes has developed into a solid player. You either have to franchise or sign him.

  11. Brobokil says:
    February 26, 2020 at 5:00 pm

    Harris was awesome this year, you could see he was getting really good even last year. But fwippel clearly doesn’t understand how salary caps work. Griffen dropped his contract likely to come back cheaper and with a reduced cap hit. Harris is going to demand a very rich contract that the Vikings have no way of matching with their salary cap issues.

    ===========================================================
    I mentioned Griffen because he was mentioned in the article. I get that Griffen can come back at a reduced rate; my point is that there are young players behind him who are ready to step up, and the team would be better off moving on from Griffen than paying what he can get somewhere else.

  12. Complete and total rebuilds like this are extremely painful, and will be especially difficult for this already frail fan base.

  13. It seems like the Vikings are going to let Harris & Rhodes walk. And resign Wayne.
    I am okay with those moves.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.