NFL Free Agents: Why the Minnesota Vikings Should Sign Terrell Owens

Cody CurrieCorrespondent IISeptember 23, 2011

The Minnesota Vikings are off to a rough start this 2011-12 NFL season.  They currently sit at 0-2, with losses to the San Diego Chargers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  

Adrian Peterson has been great as usual, but the passing game has been very suspect so far this season.  Percy Harvin is the team's only legitimate starting receiver, and he may not be ready to take on a No. 1 receiver role just yet.  

New starting QB Donovan McNabb was anemic in the season opener against the Chargers, throwing for just 39 yards with a touchdown and an interception.  He was better against the Buccaneers, throwing for 228 yards, but he didn't throw a touchdown pass and the team blew a late lead and ended up losing.  

Harvin has been solid thus far, catching eight passes for 83 yards, but anytime a team's starting QB throws for just 39 yards in an entire game, that really says something about the team's passing game and group of receivers.

Bernard Berrian was almost non-existent with Brett Favre at the helm and McNabb could get him more involved as the season progresses, but he is more suited to a No. 3 receiver role.  

Enter Terrell Owens.

While he has yet to play in a football game this season, and he is getting up there in age (he's 36), he showed last season that he still has the ability to be a playmaking wide receiver in this league.  He posted solid numbers last year, catching 72 passes for 983 yards and nine touchdowns in just 14 games.  This was while playing with another No. 1 caliber receiver in Chad Ochocinco.

Owens still has big play potential and would be a solid addition to this young Vikings receiving core.  

While his attitude over the course of his career has been less than stellar, he behaved himself quite well during his brief stops with the Buffalo Bills in 2009 and the Cincinnati Bengals last season.  He would instantly become the most experienced player on the Vikings offense and would be a solid mentor for the rest of the Vikings receivers, particularly easing Harvin into a go-to receiver role.  Adding Owens would dramatically open things up for the Vikings offense both in the passing and running game.

Owens is a player who could still command double teams, leaving the speedy Harvin in a lot of one-on-one coverage.  It would also leave Berrian free to work the middle of the field in a slot receiver role.

The Vikings also have a solid pass-catching tight end in Visanthe Shiancoe, though he is off to a slow start this season.  He was a huge difference maker when the Vikings made their NFC Championship game run in 2009.  

Adding Owens would also open up the running game for Peterson. With Peterson's talent, he could run all over opposing defenses while they focus their attention on Owens and Harvin more.  Should he perform close to as well as he did last season, the Vikings would be very difficult to defend, pairing a good passing attack with the best running back in the league.

Overall, this is a no-lose scenario for the Vikings.  They add a player who still has playmaking ability, but if he doesn't perform, the team doesn't lose anything as they are a team built for the future.  However, adding Owens would definitely ensure more short-term success for this young team and give them some confidence moving forward.