Source: Vikings prepared to sign former Gophers linebacker Blake Cashman

After growing up in Minnesota, linebacker Blake Cashman agreed to a deal on Monday that will give him a chance to play for the hometown Vikings.

A source confirmed the agreement to the Pioneer Press.

A native of Eden Prairie, Cashman, 27, starred for the hometown Gophers in college before being selected by the New York Jets in the fifth round of the 2019 NFL Draft. He went on to play for the Houston Texans, putting forth his best performance last season with 106 tackles across 14 games.

It will be a 3-year, $25.5 million deal for Cashman, according to NFL Network insider Tom Pelissero. Cashman’s instincts at the point of attack should be a perfect fit with the Vikings as he joins a group led by defensive coordinator Brian Flores.

The decision to negotiate with Cashman during the legal tampering period likely means the Vikings will be moving on from veteran linebacker Jordan Hicks. Presumably, the Vikings will move forward with Cashman and breakout linebacker Ivan Pace Jr. as their starters.

Vikings make minor moves

In a pair of smaller moves, the Vikings re-signed offensive guard Blake Brandel and offensive tackle David Quessenberry. That ensures that trenches will continue to have depth beyond the starting offensive line.

The type of continuity up front is not something that should be taken for granted as the Vikings transition to life without franchise quarterback Kirk Cousins.

Though neither player will likely ever garner much attention, Brandel and Quessenberry have proven themselves capable of contributing in a pinch. They both saw some action last season due to injuries.

No shot at Wilkins

There was a thought that the Vikings might make a run at star defensive tackle Christian Wilkins, considered by many to be the No. 1 defensive player available in free agency.

Instead, Wilkins reportedly agreed to a massive 4-year, $110 million deal with the Las Vegas Raiders. The agreement includes a whopping $84.75 million guaranteed. There’s no chance the Vikings could compete with that number.

It’ll be interesting to see how the Vikings proceed in free agency as they still likely want to add to the interior of the defensive line. They added a pair of edge rushers on Monday, agreeing to terms with Jonathan Greenard and Andrew Van Ginkel during the legal tampering period.

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