7 former Vikings have a chance at winning a Super Bowl
The Minnesota Vikings were eliminated from the playoffs when they lost to the New York Giants in the NFL’s wild-card round of the playoffs. Even with the Vikings out, there are still some reasons to cheer during Conference Championship Sunday.
This weekend, the Kansas City Chiefs take on the Cincinnati Bengals for the AFC Championship. Meanwhile, the Philadelphia Eagles host the San Francisco 49ers for the NFC Championship. Let’s look at some former Vikings who are lacing up for different teams this weekend.
TE Blake Bell: Kansas City Chiefs
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Bell’s stint in Minnesota was a short one. Bell was claimed off waivers by the Vikings in 2017 as a backup to Kyle Rudolph and David Morgan. He would go on to have a minimal role for the Vikings that season, and then his season ended in December due to a shoulder injury. The Vikings would go on to cut him the following preseason.
RB Jerrick McKinnon: Kansas City Chiefs
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Fans should remember this one. McKinnon was selected by the Vikings in the third round of the 2014 NFL Draft. He’d play for the Vikings for four seasons as a change of pace for a plethora of running backs, including Adrian Peterson. McKinnon was also a crucial part of the success in 2017 alongside Latvius Murray when Dalvin Cook went down with a torn ACL. McKinnon signed with the Chiefs in 2021 and then re-signed with them in 2022 and is an integral part of the Chiefs’ offense.
S Marcus Epps: Philadelphia Eagles
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Epps’ stint in Minnesota didn’t last long. The Vikings selected him in the 6th round of the 2019 NFL draft and ended up cutting him in November of that year. The Eagles claimed him a day later, and he’s been on their roster ever since.
DT Linval Joseph: Philadelphia Eagles
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The Vikings signed Joseph back in 2014 under former head coach Mike Zimmer. Joseph provided the Vikings with stability at their defensive tackle position, something they hadn’t seen since Pat Williams and Kevin Williams. Joesph would sign with the Los Angeles Chargers in the 2020 offseason after spending five years in Minnesota.
There were rumors earlier this offseason that there might be a reunion for the Vikings and Joseph, but unfortunately, those didn’t come to fruition. Joesph signed with the Eagles in November alongside Ndamukong Suh to help fortify the Eagles’ defensive line.
WR Ihmir Smith-Marsette: Kansas City Chiefs (Practice Squad)
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The Vikings selected Smith-Marsette in the fifth round of the 2021 NFL Draft in hopes of developing him into a good role player for the team. Unfortunately, that hope was short-lived. Smith-Marsette was released by the Vikings prior to the 2022 season when he was claimed by the division rival Chicago Bears.
His highlight of the season is juking out cornerback Cam Dantzler and then having Dantzler bounce back up and strip the ball from him, which inevitably ended the game. He was waived by the Bears a month later, picked up by the Chiefs, and has remained on their practice squad since.
S Anthony Harris: Philadelphia Eagles (Practice Squad)
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Fans will remember Harris and think fondly of his time here in Minnesota. An undrafted free agent out of Virginia, Harris worked his way into the starting lineup and somehow earned the trust of Mike Zimmer. Harris would provide stability opposite Harrison Smith for three seasons. Harris ended his Vikings career with 25 pass breakups and nine interceptions.
In the offseason of 2021, Harris would go on to sign a one-year deal with the Philadelphia Eagles. After the 2021 season, the Eagles and Harris agreed to another deal, but then the Eagles decided to cut Harris prior to the start of the 2022 season. Harris had a short stint with the Denver Broncos but then ended up on the Eagles’ practice squad.
QB Jake Browning: Cincinnati Bengals (Practice Squad)
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Browning joined the Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2019 and remained on the practice squad for the duration of his two-year contract. He was waived in 2021 and picked up by the Bengals a week later. Browning has continued to stick with the Bengals on their practice squad for the last two seasons.
DT T.Y. McGill: San Francisco 49ers (Practice Squad)
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McGill was signed to the Vikings practice squad in November 2021 and then signed to a new contract in the 2022 offseason. There was hope in training camp that McGill could be a role player for the Vikings this past season, but he was unfortunately placed on injured reserve in August and then released shortly thereafter. McGill was later signed to the 49ers’ roster in October.
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