Ali’s Mailbag: Mattison’s Workload, The WR3 Competition, and Some DE Speculation

Good morning, Vikings fans. This is the first edition of the The Vikings Gazette mailbag with Ali Siddiqui. We’ve taken on four questions, and Ali offered up his Vikings wisdom. Enjoy.

Dalvin Cook is very good, but yes that would definitely be beneficial. Cook has missed 21 games in four seasons (12 in 2017) and in addition to averaging 17.9 carries per game throughout his career, he also has averaged 3.4 receptions per game. It is also now a 17-game season, so the Vikings should ease up the load on Cook, but not a whole lot. Cook’s versality in the running and passing game is a great asset to have.

Mattison is going into year three and is a good back as well, which is another reason to give him more opportunities. Mattison rushed for 95 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries in week 17 last year at Detroit while Cook was out and at Seattle he rushed for 112 yards on 20 carries (Cook left the game in the third quarter).

Cook will and should continue to get plenty of opportunities, but yes the Vikings should ease his load just a tad to keep him more fresh.

Ronnie Perkins was the next defensive end drafted after Patrick Jones II and he was suspended the first five games of last season due to a failed drug test.

Justin Houston. Jones has a cap hit of $20.83 million this year, while Houston is a free agent. The Vikings may not have to give up too much for Jones, but they would have to clear up cap space to acquire him. It is possible, given the Vikings could make cuts and extend Harrison Smith and Brian O’Neill, but for Houston they would not have to give up anything and he would not cost very much.

While Houston is not as good as Jones, he would still help a lot. Even at age 32, he had 19 sacks the previous two seasons. Either would be a very good addition to a defense that should be vastly improved.

Will the Vikings go after either of them? That will be very interesting to find out.

I’m sure both would welcome the competition, but if either had to be worried, I’d say Beebe. He is 27, while Johnson is 24.

Hard to see the Vikings keeping both. They just signed Dede Westbrook and they love Ihmir Smith-Marsette.

Editor’s Note: Our thanks to everyone who submitted a question for Ali’s Mailbag. You can find Ali on Twitter. Follow Ali and The Vikings Gazette so you don’t miss the next one!