What Does Ngakoue Trade Mean for Ifeadi Odenigbo… or Danielle Hunter?
The Minnesota Vikings made a big move this morning (in case you are just waking up from a rough weekend). Yannick Ngakoue wanted out of Jacksonville so badly, he took a $5M pay cut to facilitate a trade to the Vikings. That’s before taxes, given Florida doesn’t have a state income tax.
Ngakoue is expected to play rock/paper/scissors with Danielle Hunter, on who will move to the right side of the defensive line. That would leave Ifeadi Odenigbo as the odd-man-outside. While others around him were celebrating though, Odenigbo was tweeting… and maybe watching movies. Reports haven’t been confirmed.
Yannick Ngakoue played left defensive end for Jaguars. #Vikings co-DC Andre Patterson recently said Danielle Hunter would not move from left to right side but we'll see if that changes. Regardless, Ifeadi Odenigbo, who was slated for right DE, looks to be odd man out as starter.— Chris Tomasson (@christomasson) August 30, 2020
What Next on Defensive Line?
A lot of questions remain unanswered on this defensive line. Hell, this trade isn’t even finalized so Mike Zimmer couldn’t specifically comment on it, when talking with reporters earlier today. It’s tough to address what will happen with Ifeadi Odenigbo, until Danielle Hunter actually takes the practice field, too.
We can’t have the scariest (and youngest) DE duo in the NFL, if half of the equation is sidelined with the most mysterious injury “tweak”, since Joe Mauer created Bilateral Leg Weakness.
When (or if) Hunter does return, expect Odendigbo to ride pine unless it’s 3rd down or starters need air. Many are already dreaming up the rush packages Zim and Patterson can draw up with Hunter, Ngakoue, Odenigbo, Stephen and others at their disposal.
When I watched Mike Zimmer’s zoom conference today, it seemed obvious he hasn’t been impressed by the defensive line. He threw in the, “every day is different” and “sometimes offense wins and sometimes defense does”, when pressed. He definitely didn’t want to get into details, though.
He also admitted (which we kind of knew) that they’ve been looking for another pass rusher for awhile. I’m not saying the Vikings were desperate for an improvement at defensive line… but one thing seems clear. Ifeadi Odenigbo wasn’t the fix they were looking for.
As long as Danielle Hunter is healthy….. Odenigbo will be nothing but a good backup that Zimmer can have some fun with in passing situations. Beyond that, the Ifeadi Odenigbo hype train has been derailed.
Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan