Minnesota Vikings' 53-man roster projection includes needed depth on defense

EAGAN, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings open training camp on Wednesday at TCO Performance Center in Eagan, Minnesota.

Coming off a 7-9 season in which they failed to qualify for the playoffs, the Vikings put a heavy emphasis on retooling their defense by signing eight free agents and replenishing depth with five defensive draft picks. While most of Minnesota's offensive personnel remains the same in 2021, the defense will feature at least seven new starters. The Vikings also have new coordinators on offense (Klint Kubiak) and special teams (Ryan Ficken).

Here's a 53-man roster projection:

QUARTERBACK (3): Kirk Cousins, Kellen Mond, Jake Browning

Cousins enters his fourth season as the Vikings' starting quarterback a year after coach Mike Zimmer said Minnesota's offense was the most explosive he's seen in his tenure. The Vikings spent a third-round pick on Mond, which suggests they're waiting to see how Cousins performs in the final two years of his contract before making any long-term decisions at the position. But for now Mond is very much in the developmental stage of his NFL career. Browning took the majority of second-team reps this spring ahead of Mond and Nate Stanley. Although he appears the most prepared to earn the No. 2 job, Mond will have every opportunity to compete for it.