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Vikings hosting Dalton Risner on a free agent visit

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reports that Dalton Risner, the former Denver Broncos offensive guard, is expected to make a visit to the Minnesota Vikings. At the moment, it’s uncertain where he could potentially fit since he has primarily played left guard, a position currently occupied by Ezra Cleveland.

Risner, 28, is a former second-round pick from the 2019 NFL Draft coming out of Kansas State. He quickly established himself as a vital presence on Denver’s offensive line, missing only three career games, showcasing his durability, versatility and consistency.

The former Denver Bronco has proven to be a reliable pass blocker since entering the league, with his best season coming in 2021 when he finished with a 73.6 PFF grade. However, his effectiveness as a run blocker hasn’t translated as successfully, as he has consistently received below-par grades, with a maximum of 63.2 PFF run blocking grade.

The potential link between Risner and the Minnesota Vikings gains further credibility through his established relationship with offensive line coach Chris Kuper, who previously served as Denver’s assistant offensive line coach under Vic Fangio. Kuper had the opportunity to work closely with Risner for multiple seasons and even attended his wedding, suggesting a level of camaraderie beyond the typical player-coach dynamic.

Minnesota has encountered some issues with their offensive line as they prepare for the 2023 season. Recently, depth guard Chris Reed has been placed on the non-football injury list, and their 2022 second-round pick, Ed Ingram, struggled while playing at right guard last season. Given these uncertainties, the team’s interest in Risner seems logical as they look to address their offensive line issues.

At this time, it’s not clear whether Risner is currently heading to Minnesota or has already arrived for his visit. However, the major hurdle lies in determining the amount of money Risner is seeking, which has been speculated to be the primary reason why a player of his high caliber is still available on the open market.


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