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Vikings Twitter mailbag: Draft, WRs and ... 'The Amazing Race'?

MINNEAPOLIS -- In this week's edition of the Vikings Twitter mailbag, we look at whether another strong draft could make the Minnesota Vikings contenders in 2016. Plus, a look at the schedule, some old and new options at receiver and ... which Vikings coach would make the best Amazing Race partner?

@GoesslingESPN: Good morning, everyone. We'll get started here. I don't think it's a stretch to say the Vikings have a chance to be among the NFC's contenders in 2016, especially if they're able to find a few contributors in the draft. They'll draft with an eye toward their future, as they should, but as their 2015 draft class showed, the Vikings won't hold rookies back if they have a chance to contribute now. It's important that the 2015 class continues to develop -- particularly if Trae Waynes is starting at cornerback opposite Xavier Rhodes this fall -- and the Vikings won't have a chance to make a deep playoff run if their efforts to revamp their offensive line fall flat. But I certainly don't look at the roster, as it's constituted now, and see too many holes for the Vikings to contend in 2016. We know they have to fix their passing game, and Mike Zimmer has said he wants more consistency on defense. If the Vikings do those things -- particularly if they're able to get a boost from their 2016 draft class like they did in 2015 -- I don't think a deep playoff push is far fetched. @GoesslingESPN: We should find out the regular-season schedule in the next week or two, but I know the Vikings have been aiming for a big matchup to open U.S. Bank Stadium. Their top choice, obviously, would be the Green Bay Packers, and after the two teams played for the NFC North title in prime time last season, there'd be plenty of interest in the rivalry's next installment. I could see that being the matchup, particularly if the Vikings' home opener comes in Week 2 and they avoid the crowded slate of Week 1 prime-time games. The 2016 home schedule also includes a game with the Arizona Cardinals, which would have some prime-time appeal, particularly with Larry Fitzgerald coming back to his hometown. A Vikings-Colts matchup is also a possibility, and the networks never have trouble putting the Dallas Cowboys in prime time. But if the Vikings get a headlining opener for their new stadium, my sense is the preference would be the Packers. When Green Bay opened a refurbished Lambeau Field in 2003, of course, it was the Vikings who traveled east and spoiled the occasion. There's a risk of the same thing happening here, particularly if the Packers have a healthier set of weapons around Aaron Rodgers than they did last year. No matter the result, though, a Vikings-Packers opener would bring an electric atmosphere to U.S. Bank Stadium's debut. @GoesslingESPN: There's been plenty of talk from Vikings fans about this the last few days, since Jennings went on the radio in the Twin Cities and stumped for the Vikings to bring him back. But I have a hard time seeing it. First off, Jennings wasn't the best fit in the Vikings' offense two years ago, and while the Mike Wallace experiment didn't pan out, there was a clear sense last year that Wallace represented the type of receiver the Vikings needed, more so than Jennings did. The Vikings also didn't have the smoothest set of negotiations with Jennings last spring, when they tried to hammer out a restructured contract. Now, Jennings needs a job, and he's likely be amenable to an incentive-laden deal this time, but he also turns 33 in September. Remember what Mike Zimmer said at the NFL owners' meetings last month, about how he didn't think the Vikings necessarily needed to get a veteran receiver after cutting Wallace? Finally, while Jennings made the case this week that the Vikings needed a mentor ("In a wide receiver room, where's the veteran? Where's the leadership? Where's the accountability?" he said), it's important to remember what wide receivers coach George Stewart said last summer, when I asked him about Wallace's potential to lead the group: "We've never had that true veteran guy here," Stewart said. "Greg was trying to do it, but we've never had that true guy who's like Mike Wallace. You remember that old commercial -- 'When E.F. Hutton speaks, people listen?' That's Mike Wallace. He's not afraid to get into your face." For whatever reason, it didn't seem as though Jennings' leadership was as much of an asset in Minnesota as the Vikings hoped when they signed him in March 2013. In the end, I think it's more important for them to get a big receiver who can catch balls over the middle than it is for them to add a veteran. Put me in the group that would be skeptical to see a Jennings-Vikings reunion. @GoesslingESPN: I'm going to continue throwing cold water on some receiver-related theories here. Yes, the Vikings have shown some interest in the German receiver. Yes, his physical traits make him an intriguing project. But in a draft where receivers are expected to be available through the middle rounds, is it worth spending that high of a pick on a player who'd have a major adjustment to make in the NFL? Boehringer could be worth a gamble in the seventh round, or as an undrafted free agent, but I have a hard time seeing more than that. Remember, Stefon Diggs was a fifth-round pick last year. There are good receivers available that late who'd bring fewer questions than Boehringer. He's the type of player I'd expect would need some time on a practice squad, which would naturally reduce the initial investment in him. This reminds me a bit of Babatunde Aiyegbusi, the Polish offensive lineman whose story and size won him some attention last summer. Yes, he was popular with fans. But the Vikings aren't going to make decisions based on that. By no means am I saying Boehringer isn't worth a look, or doesn't have a chance to succeed in the NFL. I'd just be careful about assuming it will happen quickly.

@GoesslingESPN: It took me about five seconds after reading this question to come up with my answer: Special teams coordinator Mike Priefer. If I'm going to be competing in a battle of wits and resourcefulness that requires me to successfully navigate foreign countries, give me the guy who flew Navy helicopters off the coast of Somalia in the early 1990s, dropping Navy SEALs off the coast of Mogadishu. Plus, after four seasons of covering Priefer, he doesn't strike me as a guy who'd lose for a lack of preparedness. So with all due respect to the rest of the Vikings' staff -- if, in fact, my opinion on this concerns them at all -- Priefer would be my pick.

We'll wrap it up there for the week; thanks for all the great questions, everyone. Enjoy your weekend, and we'll talk next week.