On Thursday evening, one of the multiple Vikings players who saw their practice squad contracts expire this week decided to move on. That player is former Vikings LB Ryan Connelly, who has decided to jump ship and join the New Orleans Saints, per Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press.
Connelly, an Eden Prairie native, was a key contributor to the Vikings special teams groups in both 2020 and 2021. After spending his rookie season of 2019 with the New York Giants, he came to Minnesota and played in 26 games during the following two seasons. However, his impact was also cut to a minimum in 2022. Connelly played in only Week 18 against the Bears, appearing in 29 snaps, including 16 on defense.
A major reason for this lack of playing time in 2022 had to do with being buried on the depth chart. The Vikings brough in Jordan Hicks in free agency, and then they drafted Brian Asamoah out of Oklahoma in the third round of the 2022 NFL Draft.
Prior to his career in the NFL, Connelly played four college football seasons with the Wisconsin Badgers from 2015-18. Over that time, he recorded 251 tackles, 29 TFLs, 6.0 sacks, 5 pass defenses, 2 INTs, 2 forced fumbles, and 2 fumble recoveries.
Now, Connelly joins a Saints team that went 7-10 in 2022 and missed the playoffs. He joins a linebacker room in New Orleans that includes Demario Davis, Andrew Dowell, Kaden Elliss, Chase Hansen, Ty Summers, and Peter Werner.
Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing. He also earned minors in History, Human Biology, and Journalism. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys marathon training, playing video games, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. For more of his opinions, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.