Last year, the Minnesota Vikings secondary was a complete mess. A large part is due to the fact the secondary could not stay healthy and when you add in a lack of depth plus inexperience, you are looking to equal a long season. The Vikings organization had to find this out the hard way.
One player doesn't make a team but when Antoine Winfield went down in the 5th game last year things went bad. It went from bad to worse when fellow starting cornerback Chris Cook got caught up in a domestic charge and was suspended by the Vikings organization for the remainder of the year. There isn't much to be said after that as the Vikings went on to a 3-13 season and has spent most of the offseason re-making the team and making a push towards success.
After breaking his clavicle in the 5th game of last year, Winfield choose to have surgery in November, thus ending his 2011 season. The surgery went well and Antoine has since then, dedicated himself to coming back at the ripe age of 34 and proving he can still be an effective cornerback for the team.
The Vikings have spent part of this years draft and free agency to address the lack of depth in the secondary in hopes the new blood can come in and push the incumbents for a starting position on the team. If the Vikings are to have any success, Antoine Winfield will have to be a big part of it.
Before his injury last year, Winfield was having a pretty good season and coach Frazier believes he still has something left in the tank. "We need his leadership, we need his play making ability," Frazier said. "We don't think his best football is behind him."
Winfield will be a great asset to have as a leader and also to help coach the new and younger teammates on how to run a Tampa 2 type defense effectively. With his locker room presence, veteran leadership, and some serious skills to pay the bills, Winfield has the cards in place to have success. Even at the age of 34.