John Carlson is going home.
The Litchfield, Minn., native has agreed to terms with the Vikings, according to multiple reports this morning. Carlson, the Seahawks’ second-round draft choice in 2008 and leading receiver in his rookie season, became an unrestricted free agent on Tuesday.
After catching 55 passes for 627 yards and five touchdowns in 2008, Carlson had 51 receptions for 574 yards and seven TDs in 2009 – setting franchise records for a tight end in receptions, receiving yards and TD catches in his first two seasons.
But his numbers dipped to 31 receptions for 318 yards and one TD in 2010, when he was used more as a blocker in passing situations. Carlson missed all of last season because he needed surgery after injuring a shoulder while diving to catch a pass in a training camp practice.
Even after the Seahawks added former Pro Bowl tight end Zach Miller in free agency last July, the coaches envisioned Carlson and Miller working as a tandem – and a productive one, at that.
Now, Carlson will team with another former Notre Dame tight end in Minnesota – Kyle Rudolph, the Vikings’ second-round draft choice last year.
Carlson, who was named the Seahawks’ Man of the Year last season for his work in the community, is the first of the team’s unrestricted free agents to join another team.
Update: The Vikings have announced Carlson’s signing. It’s a five-year deal.