The Vikings lost possibly the best player over 40 yards in the NFL when they traded Stefon Diggs with the Buffalo Bills this offseason, and despite using one of their first-round picks at statistics monster Justin Jefferson in April, he still They have a dazzling need for a deep threat receiver on their roster (since Jefferson primarily ran routes out of the slot at LSU (and mainly I mean more than 99.5% of the time)). His only other deep-threat catcher, Adam Thielen, did most of his damage in deep balls out of the slot, so the need for a deep-ball catcher may have been made worse by Jefferson’s writing (despite his affirmations of being better). rounded receiver that his time at LSU has shown).
Between former Steelers and Raiders wide receiver Martavis Bryant.
Or should I say, RE-Enter, former Steelers and Raiders catcher Martavis Bryant?
Bryant has been suspended several times in his career for violating the NFL’s policy on substance abuse (or missing drug tests, or violating the terms of his reinstatement), including throughout the 2016 season, but has applied for reinstatement this week. . The full-bodied receiver at almost 6’4 ″ is not a burner (at 4.42 40 times) but it has incredible control of its body and is essentially as fast as Stefon Diggs was.
As a rookie (in 2014) he averaged 21.1 yards per catch and finished that year with 8 touchdowns and 549 yards. He surpassed that yardage in each of his next (playable) seasons, with 765 yards in 2015 and 603 yards in 2017 (after missing the entire 2016 season due to a suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. ).
Those suspensions stemmed from Bryant’s use of marijuana, a policy the league recently softened to reflect a more relaxed attitude toward marijuana at the national level (albeit at the state-by-state level since federal laws have not changed). The new CBA will reduce the four-month trial period to two weeks at the start of training camp. A new threshold for a positive test will also be set, bringing the THC allowable amount from 35 nanograms to 150 (according to SportingNews.com).
The punishment is also less severe for players who go beyond that threshold. Again according to SportingNews.com:
The league is moving away from a punishment approach and is providing help to those who need it. If a player tests positive during the two-week period of training camp, their examination is reviewed by a board of medical professionals who have been appointed by the players and the league. The board decides if the player needs treatment.
It is clear that Bryant probably falls into the “needs treatment” area, as he has not demonstrated the ability to quit / use marijuana even when his career is on the line and although that treatment could mean more time off the field, it is Es Good to see that the NFL reflects the real world when it comes to substance abuse and, at least in this case, moving away from a punishment-based model and adopting a treatment-based one.
While people will swear from top to bottom that they cannot become physically addicted to marijuana, they can become mentally dependent on it and that is why they have situations like Bryants. Going back to whether the Vikings should sign him or not, his ability to stretch the field and create great plays is something this Vikings team will need in 2020 and beyond and there is relatively little risk of signing Bryant, assuming he is reinstated for the season. 2020.
It’s hard to think that he would get more than just a one-year trial contract from any NFL team, and while the Vikings may still be reeling from Michael “Kombucha” Floyd’s signing, in the end there was little risk of signing it. too.
The reward, however, could be powerful as the Vikings could have an amazing trio of receivers with Bryant, Thielen, and Jefferson, who would be allowed to play primarily in the slot as they did at LSU while acclimatizing to speed and NFL defensive force. The flip side would be that he could do something he apparently struggled with in college, which is to play abroad most of the time (due to the Vikings’ current need), which would take away from what he has shown to really , really good during his time at LSU.
That doesn’t mean the team shouldn’t use Jefferson on the outside. It’s just that with Bryant on the list they wouldn’t necessarily have to DO most of the time, which would allow Jefferson much more leeway in his development in terms of pressure and need. By having Bryant as the true great threat / great body catcher, Jefferson would be able to split time in the slot / on the outside with Thielen, giving Vikings offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak plenty of more options when it’s about playing calls, too.
Bryant is used to being a complementary catcher, playing alongside Antonio Bryant for most of his time in Pittsburgh. He’s also good on penalties, something the Vikings discovered first-hand during their September 2017 game against the Steelers in which Bryant had three catches for over 90 yards and a 49-yard pass interference penalty that Trae Waynes had to cover it (leading to a touchdown). That means Bryant ticks all the boxes one could want for his WR2 / 3, outside of repeated substance abuse problems, of course. But, you wouldn’t expect Bryant to pull a Diggs and demand more balls, nor would you expect him to have trouble coexisting with Thielen and Jefferson.
If the Vikings were looking for an extremely talented but affordable wide receiver to drop out of the blue this offseason, then it’s safe to say Bryant is that guy. If it’s not sold just take a look at some of its highlights and tell me you wouldn’t be in love with it if the Vikings sign it for a year for less than $ 4 or $ 5 million per season.
What you think?
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