<
>

Vikings position reset: Quarterback

The most significant part of the Minnesota Vikings' offseason program begins on May 26, when the team will hold 10 organized team activities and a three-day mandatory minicamp in a four-week stretch. Before that begins, we're taking a position-by-position look at the Vikings' roster, and some key battles to watch:

Position: Quarterback

Who's new: The Vikings signed a pair of quarterbacks this offseason, adding Mike Kafka on a one-year deal after the first NFL veterans combine in March, and bringing in former Old Dominion quarterback Taylor Heinicke as an undrafted free agents.

Depth chart:

1. Teddy Bridgewater: This is his job, and it's quickly becoming his team. It's a rare year where quarterback is one of the most settled positions on the Vikings' roster. The team is hoping Bridgewater keeps it that way for a decade or more.

2. Shaun Hill: Signed to a two-year, $6.5 million deal in free agency, the 35-year-old will be a veteran mentor for Bridgewater, and an emergency plan the Vikings hope they won't have to use.

3. Kafka: The former Eagles and Buccaneers quarterback threw the ball well for scouts in Phoenix, displaying a strong arm. He'll have to play well enough that the Vikings keep three quarterbacks on the roster -- and possibly four in the organization, since they seem interested in developing Heinicke.

4. Heinicke: He doesn't have ideal stature or arm strength for the NFL, but his athleticism, pocket presence and accuracy will earn him a long look.

Position battles to watch: It's really only between Kafka and Heinicke for the No. 3 spot -- or possibly, by the time we get to training camp, between those two players and options at other positions. The Vikings kept three quarterbacks on their opening day roster last season, with Christian Ponder in the final year of a guaranteed contract, but if they think they can get by with Bridgewater and Hill this year, they might be able to develop Heinicke on the practice squad.