As per last year, I’ll be sharing projections for every team in the NFL. I use past production in specific roles for each team’s scheme to work out realistic production profiles. You can see how accurate I was in 2017 in my IDP Projection Marking series.
The Vikings were an elite defense by any measure in 2017 and a defense that propelled their team all the way to the NFC championship game. I often point out that defenses don’t often remain elite across seasons, but the Vikings added some very good pieces in the off-season. Coupled with their head coach’s long history of excellence, they might be an exception to the rule.
Sheldon Richardson was brought in on a significant contract and is one of the key additions this year. If he can produce interior pressure (he managed 36 total pressures last season which placed him 18th of all interior players), it will totally change the shape of this line. He should be valued just outside of the elite group of tackles.
Linval Joseph actually managed about 30 total pressures last year – which is very impressive – but he’s probably not going to be consistent enough to pay off in most leagues. He’s a fine NFL player but not an IDP star.