As their search for a general manager narrows, it looks like the Minnesota Vikings are headed for a youth movement.

Heading into the weekend, the Minnesota Vikings apparently narrowed their GM opening to two candidates: Ryan Poles of the Kansas City Chiefs and Kwesi Adofo-Mensah of the Cleveland Browns. Both of these candidates have earned a second interview with Minnesota, but the most notable information here is their youth.

Poles is 36 while Adofo-Mensah is 32, steering the Vikings towards a new vision for the future. This trend continues among their head coach candidates as well, as a portion of their interviews have gone to younger candidates.

Assuming the Vikings hire one of these GM candidates in the next few days, a head coaching hire should be done soon. Ryan Poles could bring Eric Bieniemy or Mike Kafka with him from Kansas City as brilliant offensive-minded head coaches, but other young guys like Raheem Morris, DeMeco Ryans and Kevin O’Connell all have a chance. to be named the next leader of the club. .

There’s still a lot to unpack and discover with the Minnesota Vikings’ next plan, but the move to a younger team is great news. Minnesota has a young roster, a unit that ranked sixth in the NFL at the start of last season in terms of age.

Changes could be coming to the Minnesota Vikings roster

The offense is the youngest in the NFL and if Kirk Cousins ​​and Adam Thielen are retired in the offseason, that number will continue to decline. There are plenty of stars to be built around the offense, from Justin Jefferson and Dalvin Cook to Brian O’Neill and Christian Darrisaw on the offensive line.

Defensively, the Vikings are moving in the wrong direction but there is still talent to be found on this side of the ball. Eric Kendricks and Danielle Hunter, if they stay, are two of the best in their respective positions when healthy. Money may be a little tight unless these two – and others – agree to take pay cuts by 2022.

I think Cameron Dantzler can be a really good outside cornerback in the NFL and his numbers back that up so far. He’s a bit inconsistent in his coverage and his distracted coverage that allowed the Lions to upset Minnesota in 2021 surely confirms that. But when Dantzler is playing at his best, he’s one of the best young cornerbacks in the league.

A new regime is going to bring its own philosophies and with that comes a new wave of talent on and off the pitch. We should see a change in roster construction at some point in the offseason and it could reshape the Vikings roster for the next few years.

Kirk Cousins ​​is the big name to watch, but other veterans like Eric Kendricks, Danielle Hunter and Harrison Smith could all be tasty assets for the next GM to help get his guys into the building. If they want to go in a different direction, they should be able to trade aging veterans for suitors to help move the roster in the direction they see fit.

For years, the Vikings have been trying to build a roster for Kirk Cousins. They spent resources on the offensive line and wide receiver/tight end to give him enough weaponry to succeed. He came to Minnesota when they had a top-10 defense in the NFL.

Whatever the excuses, Cousins ​​failed to make his mark in the NFC North and the Vikings fell short of the goals set by signing Cousins ​​in 2018. Now is the time to build around the superstars who can really make a difference.

Justin Jefferson and Dalvin Cook are currently the best players in Minnesota. Both will attract players for the next head coach and they’re a big reason the Vikings job was so popular this cycle.

Jefferson can truly become one of the best to ever play in the NFL and certainly one of the franchise’s greatest players if he continues at the pace he is at now. At just 22 years old, the future is brighter than ever imagined for the sophomore wide receiver.

Bringing in a new coach and general manager who will listen to a wide receiver’s pleas and allow him to be the focal point of the rebuild is what this team needs most. If the next GM wants to roll with a rookie quarterback as some kind of statement, that could be great news for Jefferson while helping the defense.

Jefferson would still get his bulky share of goals while the money currently going to Kirk Cousins ​​could instead be spent on defense to help replace some of the veterans who leave in the offseason.

This offseason could prove to be a big one for the future of the Minnesota Vikings. Investing to rejuvenate at the top of the organization and letting that trickle down the roster is the perfect scenario for an aging defense.

I think this is the best reset the Vikings could hope for and each of the two finalists for the GM job is worthy of the role. Neither candidate would be the wrong choice and that’s exciting for Minnesota.