Vikings release unofficial depth chart ahead of Week 1 against Packers

After an offseason of changing the front office and coaching staff, it’s finally game week for the Minnesota Vikings.

The NFL season officially starts Thursday night, but the Vikings open the 2022 regular season hosting the Green Bay Packers at U.S. Bank Stadium on Sunday. Kickoff is set for 3:25 p.m., and you can see the game on Fox 9.

On Tuesday, a day off for the team, the Vikings released an unofficial depth chart with the opening game just five days away. Here’s what it looks like, with the reserves in parentheses:

Starting offense:

  • Quarterback: Kirk Cousins (Nick Mullens)
  • Running back: Dalvin Cook (Alexander Mattison, Kene Nwangwu, Ty Chandler)
  • Fullback: CJ Ham
  • Wide receivers: Justin Jefferson, Adam Thielen (KJ Osborn, Jalen Reagor, Jalen Nailor)
  • Tight end: Irv Smith Jr. (Johnny Mundt, Ben Ellefson)
  • Offensive line: Christian Darrisaw, Ezra Cleveland, Garrett Bradbury, Ed Ingram, Brian O’Neill (Blake Brandel, Oli Udoh, Vederian Lowe, Austin Schlottmann, Chris Reed)

There are no real surprises among the offense. The Vikings traded free agent acquisition Jesse Davis after Ed Ingram won the starting right guard job. Irv Smith Jr. says he’s healthy and ready to play Sunday after having thumb surgery during training camp. The Vikings traded for Jalen Reagor after Bisi Johnson’s season-ending knee injury, and traded for Nick Mullen to back-up Kirk Cousins. That signaled the end of Sean Mannion and Kellen Mond with the Vikings.

Defensive starters:

  • Defensive ends: Dalvin Tomlinson, Jonathan Bullard (James Lynch, Ross Blacklock, Esezi Otomewo)
  • Nose tackle: Harrison Phillips
  • Outside linebackers: Za’Darius Smith, Danielle Hunter (Patrick Jones II, D.J. Wonnum, Luiji Vilain)
  • Inside linebackers: Eric Kendricks, Jordan Hicks (Troy Dye, Brian Asamoah)
  • Cornerbacks: Patrick Peterson, Cam Dantzler (Chandon Sullivan, Akayleb Evans, Kris Boyd, Andrew Booth Jr.)
  • Safeties: Harrison Smith, Cam Bynum (Lewis Cine, Josh Metellus)

Again, not a ton of surprises other than that the Vikings are switching to a 3-4 base defense after playing a 4-3 during Mike Zimmer’s tenure. That effectively makes Danielle Hunter and Za’Darius Smith rush edgers. Jordan Hicks is the new linebacker along Eric Kendricks with Anthony Barr gone. Cam Bynum won a starting safety job in training camp, but rookie Lewis Cine will get plenty of snaps.


  • Kicker: Greg Joseph
  • Punter/Holder: Ryan Wright
  • Long snapper: Andrew DePaola
  • Kick return: Kene Nwangwu (Ty Chandler, KJ Osborn)
  • Punt return: Jalen Reagor (Jalen Nailor)

Ryan Wright beat out Jordan Berry for the punting job. Greg Joseph had an outstanding fall camp, and the trade for Jalen Reagor puts him at the No. 4 receiver spot and leading candidate to return punts.