Last season, Larry Dean had a career-high 18 special teams tackles, second on the team.
Bruce Kluckhohn/Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
The Minnesota Vikings are truly keeping their own.
With the deadline approaching on Tuesday to extend contracts to all of its restricted free agents or exclusive rights free agents, Minnesota re-signed linebacker Larry Dean on Monday morning. Dean, a special teams standout, was the last of the Vikings’ restricted free agents after the team agreed to a deal with cornerback Marcus Sherels on Friday.
Minnesota also extended an offer to exclusive rights free agent Matt Asiata last week to retain his rights.
Dean, 25, is a former undrafted free agent who has worked himself into a key special teams and backup linebacker role with the Vikings. Dean has played in 48 straight games since debuting in 2011. Last season, Dean had a career-high 18 special teams tackles, second on the team.
He added 13 tackles on defense and brings depth to a linebacker corps that could have two new starters alongside Chad Greenway. Minnesota reportedly agreed to terms with middle linebacker Jasper Brinkley on Sunday to return to the team after one year in Arizona and also has young linebackers Audie Cole, Michael Mauti and Gerald Hodges.