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Can the new signee stick as a backup for the purple?
"WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections Vikings 2018 SeasonVikings 2019 OffseasonU.S. Bank StadiumMinnesota Vikings PodcastsMinnesota Vikings 2019 OffseasonDakota Dozier:Backup LG?New ,162commentsCan the new signee stick as a backup for the purple?CDTShareTweetShareShareDakota Dozier:Backup LG?Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY SportsThe Vikings recently signed G Dakota Dozier, formerly a backup OL with the Jets and a 4th round draft pick of theirs back in 2014. Current Vikings offensive line coach Rick Dennison served in that capacity last year for the Jets, and presumably that connection had something to do with Dozier’s signing with the Vikings.Dozier has been a career backup, filling in for injured players at most RG and LG for the Jets over the past three seasons.He’s had the equivalent of about a half-season of starting experience altogether over that span.His PFF grades have been declining each of the last three years with the Jets, but it’s hard to put too much stock in his grades because he only played a few games a year. The Jets, being the Jets, had a new offensive scheme and coordinator every season, so I’m sure that didn’t help Dozier’s development.Anyway, I put together a game film of Dozier playing left guard last year against the Titans week 13 - his only start last season.It’s nothing terribly remarkable, but there are a few things that stand out, more negative than positive:He seemed tentative at times, especially early in the game (his first gig last season)He’s definitely a liability blocking in space and the second level - many whiffsNot particularly athletic, and can get beat by more athletic defensive linemenTechnique overall not particularly strikingHas a proclivity to hold on occasion late in the play - nothing too flagrant however.Not real good as a pulling guardOn the positive side:He did reasonably well in pass protection - only one hurry credited to him.But didn’t have a lot of one-on-ones in pass protection either.He does better in close quarters against the DL, where he can leverage his strengthHe may be better as a strictly zone blocker.Overall he looks more like a backup than a starter at left guard, but perhaps in a Kubiak zone scheme he may do better as a run blocker , and can hold his own against less athletic defensive linemen in pass protection, although he may struggle against quicker, more agile ones.Presumably Rick Dennison saw some things he liked in Dozier, and perhaps thought he’d do better in Kubiak’s scheme, so the Vikings signed him on a low-level deal.We’ll see how it pans out, but I wouldn’t expect Dozier to be a starter come September. EAGAN, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings followed their NFC championship game appearance by signing the most accomplished quarterback on the market and adding a premier defensive tackle. They put themselves squarely in the offseason conversation about legitimate contenders for the Super Bowl.That turned out to be just talk , for many reasons that were perhaps part of the mystery and unpredictability of major sports.“This football team through four years that I’ve been here had that ‘nasty, we’re going to win regardless of what the situation is’ mentality, and I don’t know that we had it this year,” Zimmer said. “I talked to a couple people during the season around the building, and I actually said to them, ‘It’s just kind of a different vibe with this football team, and I can’t figure out why.’ Because we had a lot of the same guys back. We have good football players. I wasn’t really different than I normally am. But for some reason we didn’t finish the games like we’d finished before.”The Vikings went 8-7-1, missing the playoffs when defending champion Philadelphia , the team that beat them so soundly in the semifinals a year ago, leapfrogged them on the last day of the season. Losing 24-10 at home on Sunday to division-rival Chicago , with a mostly lethargic offense, a couple of critical lapses on defense, and special teams lacking a momentum-changing play, was a fitting conclusion.“But we’re going to get that mentality back,” Zimmer said on Thursday at his wrapup news conference. “I can promise you that.”If not, there’s no guarantee Zimmer will last in Minnesota past 2019. Asked whether he’d be comfortable working on the final year of his contract without an extension in place, Zimmer didn’t flinch.“Sure, I’ve got no problem with that,” he said. “Free agent after that, right?”One of only 11 current head coaches in the NFL who would have five or more years of tenure with their team, Zimmer is now the dean of the NFC North with Green Bay firing Mike McCarthy last month and Chicago and Detroit making their changes after last season. This much, at least, was certain surrounding the 62-year-old Zimmer’s status: He didn’t consider retiring or resigning.“I’m not a quitter ,” he said.The sudden death of beloved offensive line coach Tony Sparano took quite an emotional toll on Zimmer and his team three days before training camp began. Sparano’s absence was clearly felt intangibly throughout the season. The rift that developed between Zimmer and offensive coordinator John DeFilippo, for one, could have been bridged by Sparano, who was a friend to both.“This guy was a type-A personality. He was very innovative in the running game and had a strong voice in that room and a strong voice with me,” Zimmer said. “Yeah, I do feel like we lost a bit of our identity. We’re going to get that back.”Zimmer vowed a thorough evaluation of all that went wrong for the Vikings this season, including his own decisions and performance. He didn’t have to wait to acknowledge Thursday his responsibility for the deterioration of his relationship with DeFilippo, who was fired with three games to go after less than a year on the job . Zimmer wanted the Vikings to run the ball more, and DeFilippo’s play calls didn’t always strike the balance he sought.“I still think Flip is a good football coach. I just didn’t like the direction that it was going at the time, and I was trying to make something to get us going again,” Zimmer said, adding: “I’ve learned a lot about the questions, the interview process, about things that I probably should do a lot better than what I did, and hopefully I’ll do better this next time.”The first order of business for Zimmer , just like last year, will be to hire his top assistant.Interim offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski’s contract will expire on Tuesday, and he’s a candidate for other open jobs around the league, including the head coaching vacancy in Cleveland, according to multiple reports. Zimmer valued Stefanski enough to block him from moving on last year.“I’m looking at all kinds of options there. We’re sitting down and evaluating everything. I think Kevin’s a really good football coach, a very smart guy. I thought he did a good job for the three weeks, in a tough situation that we had to do,” Zimmer said. “It’s fair to the organization, to myself, to the fans, that we look at everybody.”

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