(The Minnesota Vikings are) Black and Blue All Over:
You say the Vikings were sitting on their hands during the first hours of free agency? I'll point you in the direction of Adam Caplan's report that tight end John Carlson is scheduled to visit their facility Wednesday. *Update: My AFC West colleague Bill Williamson writes that Carlson is likely to sign with the Vikings after cutting short a visit with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Tight end wouldn't appear to be a primary position of need for the Vikings, who made the promising Kyle Rudolph a second-round draft pick last season. But Carlson was an excellent pass catcher for three years for the Seattle Seahawks before a shoulder injury forced him to miss the 2011 season, and he would fit a larger goal of providing quarterback Christian Ponder with more playmakers. The New England Patriots, after all, have shown how two strong pass-catching tight ends can power an offense.
The Vikings haven't shown much, if any interest, in bringing back veteran Visanthe Shiancoe, who on Wednesday morning tweeted: "Good memories in minn.. especially '09 !"
We'll keep you updated on any Vikings announcement on Carlson, a Minnesota native who is sure to get the locals excited about his return. For now, a few local headlines:
No one should be surprised at the Vikings' free agent approach, writes Judd Zulgad of 1500ESPN.com. Zulgad: "[T]o get all excited about not diving into free agency in the opening hours of a frenzy in which dollars are thrown around like Aaron Rodgers' passes? That's just silly."
The Vikings aren't looking for a quick fix, writes Dan Wiederer of the Star Tribune.
The Vikings' stadium bill will get its first committee hearing Wednesday, according to Doug Belden of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.