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Vikings release WR Berrian

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Posted Oct. 25, 2011 @ 7:50 p.m. ET
By PFW staff

Updated 7:50 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Oct. 25

The Vikings released WR Bernard Berrian Tuesday and signed WR Stephen Burton from the practice squad, the team announced Tuesday.

Berrian was deactivated Sunday for undisclosed reasons, the second time in three weeks he was a healthy scratch from a game. The first time was for disciplinary reasons. Head coach Leslie Frazier said at his Monday press conference that he wanted to speak with Berrian, so they could "get on the same page."

Berrian's actions off the field have been much more notable than his exploits on it, as he only has 91 yards receiving. He complained on Twitter earlier this season about his role, claiming he was not getting enough touches. Berrian also got into a Twitter spat with a Minnesota state legislator who criticized him on the social media site, telling him to "sit down n shut up."

He signed a six-year deal as a free agent prior to the 2008 season.

Late Tuesday, the receiver issued a statement on the news.

"I have been blessed to have had the opportunity to be a part of the Minnesota Vikings organization for the past three and a half years," Berrian said. "I can't say enough about my teammates and the experience I have had here in Minnesota. I view this as an opportunity to grow as a player and to bring strengths to a new organization. I am eager to begin the next stage in my career, and excited about the opportunity to continue my journey with a new team."


The way we see it

This moved has been expected for some time, once Berrian's production was outweighed by the headaches he created.

Berrian isn't the same player they signed in 2008, when he had 964 yards and seven touchdowns. He hasn't had a receiving touchdown in two seasons and has struggled to consistently get open this season, when he has played. Michael Jenkins, Percy Harvin and Devin Aromashodu have all outperformed him this season and will see an increase in playing time.


PFW fantasy spin

Not to defend Berrian, but his quarterbacks in Minnesota have been career backup Gus Frerotte, Tarvaris Jackson, an old Brett Favre and Donovan McNabb, who may have lost arm-strength. The point? It wasn't all on Berrian, and a change of scenery may help jump-start his career. The QBs have one quality season between them.

Will anyone sign Berrian? Perhaps, but he has no fantasy value right now and belongs on the waiver wire. The team will replace him with Devin Aromashodu and field a WR corps consisting of Percy Harvin, Michael Jenkins and Aromashodu. Harvin should be on rosters in all formats, as he's a dual rushing and receiving threat. Jenkins should be on rosters in larger leagues and Aromashodu should be on watch lists to see how rookie QB Christian Ponder responds and whom he favors. Ponder, in his NFL debut, gave hope to fantasy owners last week and made a boring offense look exciting once again. The breakdown:

  • Harvin has a season-average of 7.7 utilizations 63.1 offensive yards but zero TDs per game — a No. 3 or bye-week receiver.
  • Jenkins has a season-average of 5.4 targets for 3.9 receptions, 47.4 yards and 0.4 TDs per game — bye-week or injury fill-in numbers.
  • Aromashodu has a four-game average of 3.5 targets for one reception, 32 yards and 0.3 TDs per game — watch list numbers.

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