Minnesota Vikings safety primed for make or break 2024 season

The Minnesota Vikings entered the 2022 NFL Draft with high hopes, armed with an impressive array of picks to address key positions. However, the outcome hasn’t aligned with their expectations. Out of the 10 selections made, only guard Ed Ingram appears poised to secure a starting role as the 2024 season approaches.

One of the most significant disappointments from their draft class is their first-round pick, safety Lewis Cine. As highlighted by The Draft Network’s Justin Melo, Cine faces a critical juncture in 2024, which could make or break his tenure with the Vikings. Despite being a first-round selection, Cine spent much of his sophomore season as a healthy scratch, a stark indicator of his struggles to find a meaningful role within the team.


The financial implications further complicate Cine’s situation. Cutting him would entail a substantial cap hit, reflecting the Vikings’ dilemma of balancing financial repercussions with on-field performance. Currently languishing fifth or sixth on the safety depth chart, Cine finds himself in a defensive scheme that may not fully utilize his strengths. Known for his aggressive downhill style and penchant for explosive plays, Cine’s tackling deficiencies have posed challenges in fitting into the Vikings’ defensive strategies, particularly under Ed Donaltell’s scheme that emphasizes collective tackling efforts.

Looking ahead, Cine faces an uphill battle to secure his roster spot. Recent projections suggest he might not make the final 53-man roster, a scenario that would mark a significant setback for both him and the team. As the Vikings’ patience wears thin, Cine’s upcoming training camp performance looms large, potentially determining his future in Minnesota.

In conclusion, while the Vikings had ambitious plans for their 2022 draft class, the reality has been sobering. Cine’s situation underscores the unpredictability of NFL drafts and serves as a cautionary tale of the challenges in translating college success to professional viability. His journey moving forward will be closely watched, as both he and the Vikings navigate a pivotal offseason in pursuit of improvement and stability.