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Lawrence Jackson visits Vikings?

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Free-agent defensive end Lawrence Jackson reportedly visited with the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday.

USA TODAY Sports

When free agency first opened in March, the thinking was that the Detroit Lions were going to re-sign defensive end Lawrence Jackson. He was believed to be one of the players they wanted back, but the 2013 NFL Draft is almost here and he's still a free agent. There has been no chatter about the Lions re-signing him, and at least until after the draft plays out, it doesn't appear that they plan on doing anything.

If the Lions aren't careful, they might not even be able to wait until after the draft to re-sign Jackson. I say that because Jackson had a visit scheduled with the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday, according to the Los Angeles Times' Sam Farmer (via MLive). There's no word on how the visit went, but this is interesting news.

At this point, it's clear Jackson wasn't one of the Lions' top priorities when free agency opened. They decided to go elsewhere at defensive end by signing Jason Jones, and with the draft still to come, they've opted to wait to make any additional moves. If the draft comes and goes without the Lions addressing their need at defensive end, then you might have a situation where they try to re-sign Jackson. That obviously won't be possible if he's on the Vikings, though.

I still think it would be a mistake to not re-sign Jackson, especially if he ends up landing with the Vikings. I think he would be able to provide good depth at defensive end, and while I understand why the Lions may be waiting for the draft to happen, it'd sting to see him end up in Minnesota.