The Vikings have made multiple roster moves pertaining to the offensive line.
Minnesota signed newly available free agent Greg Mancz, the team announced Tuesday. The 30-year-old most recently was on the Browns 53-man roster but was released on Dec. 23.
The Vikings also added tackle Bobby Evans, who recently was released by the Rams, to the practice squad.
The signings occurred in conjunction with placing Vikings right tackle Brian O’Neill and center Austin Schlottmann on Injured Reserve after both suffered what Vikings Head Coach Kevin O’Connell described as “significant” leg injuries against the Packers Sunday.
O’Connell acknowledged Monday that the loss of O’Neill and Schlottman, who had been filling in for an injured Garrett Bradbury, put an “ultimate stress” on the team’s o-line depth. Bringing in Mancz and Evans helps ease that strain a bit.
Originally signed as an undrafted free agent in 2015, Mancz (pronounced MANTS) spent his first five-plus NFL seasons with the Texans before stints with the Ravens, Dolphins, Bills and Browns. He has started 32 of 64 career games, including all 16 games for the Texans in 2016.
Mancz was a standout at the University of Toledo, where he maintained a string of 47 starts. In 2014, he was named the MAC Most Valuable Player and won the Vern Smith Leadership Award, which is given to the best player in the Mid-American Conference. He also received First-Team All-MAC honors, Second-Team All-American honors (the only player from the MAC to do so) and was invited to play in the East-West Shrine Bowl.
Mancz is a native of Cincinnati, Ohio, where he attended Anderson High School.
Mancz joins a Vikings centers group led by Bradbury, who has missed the past four games with a back injury. When Schlottmann went down Sunday, he was replaced by backup interior lineman Chris Reed.
Evans played college football at Oklahoma and was selected by the Rams in the third round of the 2019 NFL Draft. The 25-year-old has started 12 of 35 games played for L.A. and has played at the guard and tackle spots. This season, Evans started four of the 12 games he played for the Rams prior to being released.
The Vikings released outside linebacker Chris Garrett from their practice squad in order to create a spot for Evans.