There are connections between both franchises, as Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah spent time with the 49ers from 2013-to-2019. He was the manager of football research and development and was later promoted to the director of the same title before moving on to the Browns and now the Vikings.
Goessling added that Adofo-Mensah is close with Paraag Marathe of the Niners. There are a few other connections between both teams as well.
The schedule comes out a week from Thursday, but this indicates Minnesota will be a road opponent during the preseason for the 49ers. The 49ers had joint practices with the Denver Broncos in 2019. The preseason was canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19, but the team resumed joint practices in 2021 with the Los Angeles Chargers.
Joint practices are invaluable. They usually come at the perfect time, about two to three weeks into training camp after you’re tired of going against the same person every day. Last year, the defense faced one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL, and there were prime matchups like George Kittle versus Derwin James and Trent Williams facing off against Joey Bosa.
Even if it’s only for a couple of days, Trey Lance will benefit from facing a different defense in a controlled environment. Lance is unlikely to face any type of complex coverage or sophisticated blitz in a preseason game. However, the Vikes could throw the kitchen sink at Lance during practice.
Minnesota has talent all over the place, from their skill guys on both sides of the ball to Za’Darius Smith as a pass rusher. They’re good enough to “challenge” the 49ers' players, so this would be beneficial for the entire team.
We will provide an update once both teams finalize the joint practices. Until then, we’ll wait to see how many articles Mike Florio writes about Kyle Shanahan wanting to reunite with Kirk Cousins.