E Point Perfect

Vikings Sign Defender to ‘Futures’ Contract


Vikings Sign a New Sheldon
3 Dec 15, 2019; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers defensive tackle Sheldon Day (96) celebrates after a sack during the second half against the Atlanta Falcons at Levi s Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports.

The Minnesota Vikings defense ranked 27th in the NFL per defensive DVOA, 30th in points allowed, and 31st in yards allowed in 2022.

Those marks are terrible, so expect defense, defense, and more defense to be on the menu this offseason.

Vikings Sign Defender to ‘Futures’ Contract

On Monday, a tiny piece of that puzzle snapped into place as Minnesota signed defensive tackle Sheldon Day to a “futures” contract. The Pioneer Press’ Chris Tomasson tweeted, “Vikings sign DL Sheldon Day to futures deal. He spent some time in 2022 on their practice squad.”

Vikings Sign Defender to
Jul 27, 2019; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers defensive tackle Sheldon Day (96) during training camp at the SAP Performance Facility. Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports.

Day indeed played for the Vikings in 2022 but didn’t take any regular season snaps. The Vikings signed Day to the practice when squad starter Jonathan Bullard was placed on Injured Reserve in December with a bicep injury. James Lynch stepped up as a starter, but he, too, was hurt down the stretch of the regular season.

The Jacksonville Jaguars selected Day in the 4th Round of the 2016 NFL Draft, and he’s played for the 49ers, Colts, Browns, and Vikings since. In fact, Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah worked in the Browns front office during Day’s employment in Cleveland. There was an apparent connection between Adofo-Mensah and Day forged at the former workplace.

Vikings Sign a New Sheldon
May 25, 2022; Berea, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns defensive tackle Sheldon Day (92) walks off the field during organized team activities at CrossCountry Mortgage Campus. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports.

The 28-year-old has ample experience, playing 67 games in six seasons, starting 3 of those contests while racking up 76 total tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 11 QB hits, and 7 sacks. And per Pro Football Focus, Day usually resides in the high-50s and low-60s range for performance.

In Cleveland last year, Day played 46% of all defensive snaps, a career-high for the Notre Dame alumnus. He was also a part of the 49ers team that reached the Super Bowl in 2019 before a loss to Patrick Mahomes’ Chiefs.

Day is the definition of a “depth defensive tackle,” so he’ll live near the bottom of the depth chart. Unless the coaching staff falls in love with him, consider him a “practice squad guy.”

Oct 17, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Browns defensive tackle Sheldon Day (92) and middle linebacker Anthony Walker (4) run back to the bench during the first quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports.

He was on the Browns roster for most of the spring and summer but was released when the club began roster shavedowns in preparation for the 2022 season.

Day was actually on the San Francisco team that defeated the Vikings in the 2019 postseason. The Vikings upset the New Orleans Saints in the Wildcard Round, traveled to California for a Divisional Round date, and were dismissed by San Francisco, 27-10. Day logged two tackles and a tackle for loss in that contest.

Here’s his full PFF resume:

  • 2016 = 59.7
  • 2017 = 69.3
  • 2018 = 59.1
  • 2019 = 60.7
  • 2020 = 56.8
  • 2021 = 64.7
  • 2022 = DNP

Two weeks ago, Minnesota signed these six men to futures contract as well:

  • WR Trishton Jackson
  • WR Blake Proehl
  • TE Nick Muse
  • C Josh Sokol
  • OLB Benton Whitley
  • CB Tay Gowan

Day will turn 29 this summer.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.


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