He’s assuredly not underrated by Minnesota Vikings fans’ specifications, but correct deal with Brian O’Neill is not a domestic title on the entire.
Offensive linemen rarely nab billboard status — generally mainly because they really do not score touchdowns — yet O’Neill was tapped this 7 days amid the NFL’s “most underrated gamers,” according to Usa Right now.
The Landing Wire facet of Usa Right now released a list of the league’s underrated offensive players, and O’Neill was one particular of the nominees. Doug Farrar from United states of america Today opined, “You could argue that O’Neill is not genuinely underrated any more — after all, he manufactured his very first Professional Bowl in the 2021 year, and the Vikings gave him a 5-year, $92.5 million agreement extension last September. But as he’s not regularly talked about as a person of the NFL’s far better ideal tackles, he makes our checklist no matter.”
O’Neill is a “bring your lunchpail to work” variety of participant, not commanding gobs of interest or national notoriety. Although he can make higher-echelon money, O’Neill flies underneath the radar with casual NFL supporters.
The Pittsburgh alumnus is a 4-calendar year Vikings starter and, due to the fact his debut in 2018, has only offered up six sacks in about 4,000 offensive snaps. He averages 25 pressures permitted for every season even though under no circumstances missing a activity. So, he accounts for two paramount aspects of functionality — the major-tier output and sturdiness.
As observed by Farrar, O’Neill is not undervalued by his employer. He’s the NFL’s next-best-paid out appropriate tackle guiding the New Orleans Saints Ryan Ramczyk, earning $18.5 million per 12 months. Fortunately, for his sake, that is all that matters.
In May, O’Neill was “underrated” by Pro Football Aim, plopped in a tier titled “Good Starters,” correspondingly coined the 26th-ideal deal with leaguewide.
O’Neill is — and has been — unquestionably very important for the Vikings offensive line considering that signing up for the staff in 2018. Why? For the reason that Minnesota’s offensive line has supplied anemic pass protection since the arrival of Kirk Cousins. O’Neill, nevertheless, is the lone vivid place, attaining individual respect from Vikings supporters in a “well, at minimum we have O’Neill” regard.
The good thing is for the Vikings, second-year deal with Christian Darrisaw now mans the remaining the side of the line, still left guard Ezra Cleveland is acquiring on schedule, and the franchise drafted Ed Ingram from LSU previous month. With a bit of luck — and a new coaching workers — the Vikings times of putrid go blocking could be drawing to a close. And O’Neill was often the beacon of OL hope, even in the darkest of instances.
Other underrated players on Farrar’s checklist provided Ben Jones (Tennessee Titans), Hunter Renfrow (Las Vegas Raiders), and Devin Singletary (Buffalo Bills), amongst other people.
Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the College of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his every day YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking fandom dates back again to 1996. Stated guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Product, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).