Joe Berger retirement leaves Vikings with holes to fill


Joe Berger announced his retirement on Friday and the Vikings needs at offensive line are now more pronounced. 

In a statement given to Tom Pelissero, Joe Berger has announced that he will be retiring from football. Joe Berger played 12 seasons in the NFL and has been with the Vikings since 2011. The 35-year-old Berger has done anything and everything for the Minnesota Vikings over the past seven seasons, including starting 64 games and playing multiple positions on top of it.

The Michigan Tech grad’s positional flexibility has had a positive impact on the offensive line the past four seasons, which is when 55 of his 64 starts took place. Berger played wherever he was needed and performed admirably more often than not. Flexibility up front is something Rick Spielman seems to look for in his players and for proof of this you need look no further than  the Vikings’ most recent signing, Tom Compton.

Berger will be missed by the Vikings next season and acquiring another starting caliber offensive lineman as well as adding additional depth, should now a priority for Spielman this offseason. Many mock drafts agree and have predicted Minnesota will select an OL with the 30th pick in the first round of next month’s draft and depth could be added in later rounds.

Next: Minnesota native Tom Compton signed by Vikings

With a number of former Vikings heading to Carolina via free agency over the past two seasons and Berger retiring, there is a new group taking shape in the Minnesota OL room. Will they be able to provide Kirk Cousins with enough protection to fulfill the sky-high expectations for this team in 2018?