Sam Ekstrom is a Zone Coverage staff writer and podcaster in his sixth year covering the Minnesota Vikings and Minnesota Golden Gophers men's basketball team. After moving to the Twin Cities in 2014, Sam started working as a radio engineer, producer and host for "Sports Radio 105 The Ticket," where Zone Coverage was first formed. He grew up in Vermillion, S.D. rooting for the USD Coyotes (not SDSU) and graduated from Dordt (not "dork") University in Sioux Center, Iowa.
Sheldon Richardson Is a Perfect Fit as a Non-Starter
By Sam Ekstrom - Jun 16, 2021
Three years ago, Sheldon Richardson was a pricey final piece added to a defense that was already one of the league’s best. His salary will look different […]
Can Cameron Smith Be More Than Just a Feel-Good Story?
By Sam Ekstrom - Jun 2, 2021
There was an unfamiliar number running around with the linebackers last week at Vikings OTAs, a No. 32 mixed in with the familiar 40s and 50s. Don’t […]
The Vikings Should Give the Reins to Their Rookie OLs
By Sam Ekstrom - May 26, 2021
On Wednesday morning, the Minnesota Vikings will practice for the first time as a full team in front of reporters this season. It’s their first opportunity to […]
The Vikings Need to Take Their Safety Depth Seriously in 2021
By Sam Ekstrom - May 19, 2021
As bad as things got in the Minnesota Vikings’ secondary last year, they probably could’ve gotten worse. To review: Injuries promptly and thoroughly decimated Minnesota’s already-thin corner […]
The Case For Jadeveon Clowney
By Sam Ekstrom - Mar 24, 2021
Here are some things we know about the Minnesota Vikings in free agency so far. 1) They’ve been more than willing to give generous, short-term deals to […]
Last Year’s Saints Embarrassment Had a Big Effect on Minnesota’s Offseason Approach
By Sam Ekstrom - Mar 17, 2021
The Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints have faced off four seasons in a row now. And as we’ve seen in the past, that particular matchup can […]
Would the Vikings Let Beebe, Odenigbo, and Boone Walk?
By Sam Ekstrom - Mar 10, 2021
Restricted free agency is the NFL’s way of giving teams an option to hang on to some of their prized developmental assets. The Vikings have decisions coming […]
Only Six Players Remain from the Minnesota Miracle Roster
By Sam Ekstrom - Mar 3, 2021
Change is inevitable in the NFL thanks to its hard salary cap, non-guaranteed contracts, and increasing lack of patience from front offices. Unsuccessful teams are getting dismantled […]
Don’t Get Too Attached to Klint Kubiak
By Sam Ekstrom - Feb 8, 2021
Minnesota Vikings fans who have longed for continuity on the offensive side of the football can at least take solace in one thing this offseason: They’ll have […]
What Could the Vikings Do If They Shed QB Money?
By Sam Ekstrom - Feb 5, 2021
After a two-decade-long dynasty, the New England Patriots used 2020 as a reset. Forging ahead without Tom Brady was never going to be easy, and the Pats […]
FOOTBALL MACHINE: QB Trade Rumors, Super Bowl Jeopardy & Farewell
By Sam Ekstrom - Feb 3, 2021
Sam Ekstrom and Arif Hasan team up for their final Football Machine. As Sam moves on to a new opportunity, the Football Machine is appreciative for your […]
Is Justin Jefferson’s “No Drops in 2021” Promise Realistic?
By Sam Ekstrom - Feb 3, 2021
Justin Jefferson wasn’t shy in setting lofty 2020 goals. The Minnesota Vikings’ first-round pick pledged to himself that he’d catch 60 balls for 1,000 yards and six […]