The Minnesota Vikings are a team that looks to be on the rise. They have a new regime in place as Rick Spielman and Mike Zimmer were both let go this offseason, replaced by Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and Kevin O’Connell.
Despite not having a ton of cap space this offseason, the front office was able to fill some of the holes on the roster. The cornerback position still needs some work done, but the rest of the defense got some upgrades that should help get them back on track on that side of the ball.
Minnesota is shifting to a 3-4 defense with the new coaching staff and made additions accordingly. Jordan Hicks was signed to replace Anthony Barr and they landed pass rusher Za’Darius Smith. Harrison Phillips will bolster the interior of the defensive line, but the team shouldn’t stop there.
Another veteran that would be a solid addition to the defense for the Vikings is Akiem Hicks. Hicks would be a great fit for their new scheme given the versatility in his game. While Dalvin Tomlinson should be handling the nose tackle position, Hicks can play there when he needs a breather or play on the edge of their defense.
Hicks is one of the better pass-rushing defensive tackles in the NFL in recent years and remains a stout run defender as well. Age and durability are the only real concern when it comes to Hicks.
He will be 33 midway through the 2022 season and has battled a nagging groin injury to play in nine games last season and played in only five games in 2019. Despite that, he has still graded out very well among defensive tackles.
Adding him to the middle of the front seven would make Minnesota’s defense that much stronger. Since they have been unable to overhaul the cornerback position in the manner it needs, bolstering the front seven makes sense as it will take some pressure off of the secondary.
With an improved defense and strong offense, the Vikings could be a playoff contender in 2022. Adding Hicks would only increase their chances of finding success.