Chris Tomasson / St. Paul Pioneer Press
SUWANEE, Ga.—On Jan. 22, Vikings hall of fame defensive end Chris Doleman was playing golf near his Atlanta-area home and looking forward to returning to the Twin Cities the following week to attend the Super Bowl. Soon, his entire life changed. Doleman had a runny nose that day on the golf course and there was some drippage coming out of the left side of his mouth. He thought it might just be hay fever when he went to the doctor to get it checked out. His condition was far worse than Doleman, 56, could have imagined.
EAGAN, Minn.—Offensive lineman Joe Berger announced Friday, March 23, he will retire from the NFL after 13 seasons, the past seven with the Vikings. The move was not a surprise. Berger, 35, had told the Pioneer Press last December he expected to retire after the season. After a possible change in heart he did decide to field some offers when he became a free agent, but then a source told the Pioneer Press last week he again was "leaning toward retirement."
EAGAN, Minn.—Tom Compton is coming home and will be reunited with Kirk Cousins. The free-agent offensive lineman, a Rosemount native, signed Thursday with the Vikings. He flew in from Chicago, where he spent last season with the Bears, and the move was official once he passed his physical. "He's very, very excited," said Compton's mother, Karen Compton.
EAGAN, Minn.—The Minnesota Vikings liked what they saw last year from tight end Josiah Price, and he is back. The Vikings on Wednesday signed free agents Price and long snapper Nick Dooley, and waived linebacker Shaan Washington, who spent all of last season on injured reserve with a leg injury. They also announced the return of kicker Kai Forbath.
ST. PAUL—Kai Forbath is returning to the Vikings. The kicker told the Pioneer Press on Tuesday, March 20, he has signed a one-year contract that is "in the mail." Forbath wouldn't give a precise figure but said he received a "small" raise from the $775,000 he made last season. Forbath, who replaced an erratic Blair Walsh in November 2016, will be back for a third Minnesota season. He said there wasn't much suspense during negotiations.
Kai Forbath is returning to the Vikings. The kicker told the Pioneer Press on Tuesday he has signed a one-year contract that is “in the mail.” Forbath wouldn’t give a precise figure but said he received a “small” raise from the $775,000 he made last season. Forbath, who replaced an erratic Blair Walsh in November 2017, will be back for his third Minnesota season. He said there wasn’t much suspense during negotiations.
EAGAN, Minn.—The Minnesota Vikings reportedly will open next season where the last one ended in bitter disappointment. Minnesota will play at Philadelphia in the NFL opener on Thursday, Sept. 6, according to report Monday by sportscaster Howard Eskin, an Eagles sideline reporter. The Vikings lost 38-7 to the Eagles in Philadelphia in January's NFC Championship Game. The Eagles went on to win Super Bowl LII 41-33 over New England at U.S. Bank Stadium. The reigning Super Bowl champion usually opens the following season at home on NBC on a Thursday.
ST. PAUL—Jarius Wright said Saturday, March 17, the door isn't closed on a return to the Vikings. The 28-year-old receiver was released Friday so the Vikings could carve out more salary-cap room for free-agent signings. He had two years left on his contract. "It's not out of the question," Wright told the Pioneer Press about a possible return under a reduced salary. "But it's the NFL. We'll have to see what happens. But I love Minnesota. I would love to come back, so you just never know what will happen."
The Vikings released wide receiver Jarius Wright on Friday. The move saves Minnesota money under the salary cap after the team spent big on two free agents this week, signing quarterback Kirk Cousins to a three-year, $84 million contract and defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson to a one-year, $8 million deal. Wright’s role had been cut significantly the past two seasons. He was due to make a base salary of $3.6 million in 2018. The move gives the Vikings a salary-cap savings of $2.64 million but costs them $2.12 million in dead money.
A day after signing former Pro Bowl quarterback Kirk Cousins, the Vikings have landed former Pro Bowl defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson. Richardson, who arrived in the Twin Cities for a visit Thursday night, signed a one-year deal on Friday as a free agent. After signing Cousins to a three-year, $84 million deal Thursday, the Vikings went to work on their interior defensive line. They also signed free-agent defensive tackle Dylan Bradley, who was on their practice squad last season.