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Minnesota Vikings Decide To Move On Without Tarvaris Jackson

The Minnesota Vikings and former coach Brad Childress seemed to believe Tarvaris Jackson would eventually wind up being the team's quarterback of the future, but after not being extended a restricted free agent tender, Jackson will be playing outside of the Twin Cities next year for the first time since the Vikings drafted him in the second round of the 2006 NFL Draft.

In five seasons with the Vikings, Jackson started 20 of the 36 games he appeared in while throwing 24 touchdowns and 22 interceptions. The 27-year-old quarterback also 535 yards on the ground on his way to five touchdowns in 119 attempts.

Joe Webb and Rhett Bomar are now the only two quarterbacks on the Vikings roster with a good possibility of Minnesota targeting at least one more in next month's NFL Draft.

One possibility, according to SB Nation's own 2011 NFL Mock Draft, is Auburn signal-caller Cam Newton:

Quarterback is a need. Newton has immense potential. Leslie Frazier is an excellent coach that can handle challenging personalities, and offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave has done great work with young quarterbacks. This seems like an ideal fit if Newton lasts this long.

With multiple needs, it will be interesting to see if the decision to let Jackson go makes the Vikings draft a quarterback in the first round.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.