Vikings sign Sheldon Richardson

Sheldon Richardson waves as he leaves the field ejected for fighting in the final minute of play. The Seattle Seahawks played the Jacksonville Jaguars Sunday

The Vikings announced the signing of defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson Friday, just after wrapping up the deal for quarterback Kirk Cousins.

As the Minnesota Vikings continue to court coveted free agent Sheldon Richardson, the Seattle Seahawks plan to meet with one of Minnesota's own free agents as a possible replacement. Richardson was the 13th overall pick and defensive rookie of the year back in 2013.

The Vikings believe they have a Super Bowl-ready defense, although it failed them in the NFC championship game against the Eagles in Philadelphia, and now they have a quarterback they believe keeps them in contention for seasons to come. Richardson, who is 27 years old and thus just entering his prime, is a huge get for this Vikings defense and is probably a top 5 player at his position but is definitely a top 10 (three-technique) defensive tackle (Thanks Luke/LBVikings).

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As of the league's scouting combine in Indianapolis two weeks ago, coach Pete Carroll said the team still doesn't know when McDowell will be able to make his overdue debut.

The Vikings already had a good offseason to begin with, inking Cousins to a three-year deal worth a fully-guaranteed $84 million. Nobody saw that one coming a year ago. Based exclusively on ability and past production, Cousins is comfortably in the top half of National Football League starting quarterbacks, but there are probably 8-10 better players at the position.

Richardson only had one sack last season, but he had five in 2015 and eight back in 2014. He also served a one-game suspension to start the 2016 season after an off-season arrest in which he was eventually found guilty of reckless driving and resisting arrest. Dorsey's track record suggests he'll go quarterback first, but we'll see.

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"I'm very effective around the quarterback", he added.

Former Washington Redskins QB Kirk Cousins has agreed a three-year deal with the Minnesota Vikings.

As a low draft pick who was forced to work his way up the depth chart and has never won a postseason game, Cousins represented an unlikely candidate to set the precedent. And Richardson said he was interested in staying. "He didn't have a lot of sacks, but as I've said before, sacks are not our No. 1 goal".

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"If you put yourself in the right situation with the right team and the right coaches", Spielman said, "there's no reason why he shouldn't be in the Pro Bowl year in and year out".

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