I have been playing around with the fanspeak Ultimate GM game to see what may be possible. Of course the scenarios can be very unlikely like mock drafts. But, for me, it is fun to do.
I think that without a 1st round pick in this upcoming draft the Vikings will have to be very aggressive in free agency and in the draft in their efforts to improve the offensive line. I can come up with many different scenarios that could garner them a 1st round pick.
The first option is to trade the 2018 1st to a team in the mid to late 20's along with a 4th or 5th round pick (similar to what the 49ers did when they drafted Joe Staley). The question is what team would trade their 1st round pick away? I think the Chiefs could be a candidate as they are projected to receive 4 compensatory picks.
Another less popular option would be to trade a really good player. The only one I see is Xavier Rhodes. Maybe Griffen could get a 1st from a team like the Cowboys but they have little cap space for him. They would probably want Hunter.
I was thinking about a trade with the Raiders. Send them our 2018 1st and Sharrif Floyd for the #24 pick. Maybe we would have to add in a 5th or 6th?
The likely trade would be to send a 3rd round pick plus our 2018 1st to a team to get into the late 1st round.
Another thought is trading Sam Bradford for a 2nd and a future 5th or something along those lines. His value should be high and maybe a team like the Browns would give up their 2nd or at the worst 3rd round pick? Maybe the Jets would give up their 2nd or 3rd plus something else? They have no cap space though. Maybe they would trade Sheldon Richardson and Ryan Clady for Bradford? The 49ers are another team that may be interested in Bradford while still drafting a young QB.
The question is why would the Vikings do this after the season he just completed? That is a very good question.
If the Vikings believe that Teddy is going to return 100% healthy and that he should be ready by, at the worst, week 7 of the 2017 season, then having him and Bradford will be a luxury next season. On top of that, what if Bradford is playing well? Teddy stands on the sideline.
What will they do after the 2017 season? Will they extend Bradford and pick up Teddy's 5th year option too? that would cost 32 mil or more in 2018 for those two QBs.
They likely will keep both for the 2017 season and then watch Bradford walk away to another team and get nothing in return. Maybe a compensatory pick for the 2019 draft?
You can only pray that they are not stupid enough to extend Bradford and allow Teddy to get that 5th year thus carrying that 32 mil plus cap number for 2 QBs. If that happens then Teddy likely walks after the 2018 season.
Yes, while it is not popular, trading Bradford now could recoup some of the draft capital spent. I doubt it happens for the record but something to consider.
OK. So I have been doing several off season plans and they are usually different. In this plan, I am going to put a little more of what I think the Vikings may do and not really what I would do (totally).
The Vikings, according to the Ultimate GM game have 14.4 mil available which includes a RFA tender of 2.8 mil for Thielen. It also includes a tender amount for Charles Johnson.
Here you go.
Salary Cap: 166,000,000
Player Salaries: 144,244,531
Dead Money: 2,816,410
Reserved for Draft Picks: 5,000,000
Cap Space Remaining: 14,404,853
Adrian Peterson RB
Brian Robison EDGE
Brandon Fusco G
Charles Johnson WR
Cap Space Remaining: 43,004,853
Matt Kalil (OT) accepted your 5 year offer for $9,000,000 per year with 1 year guar at 5.5 mil
Adrian Peterson (RB) accepted your 4 year offer for $6,000,000 per year with 1 year guar
Brian Robison (DE) accepted your 3 year offer for $2,500,000 per year with 1 year guar
Terrence Newman (CB) accepted your 2 year offer for $2,500,000 per year with 1 year guar
Ricky Wagner (OT) accepted your 5 year offer for $7,500,000 per year
Kevin Zeitler (G) accepted your 5 year offer for $10,000,000 per year
Abry Jones (DL) accepted your 4 year offer for $3,000,000 per year
Cap Space Remaining: 16,929,853
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
SENT: ROUND: 2 PICK: 16
RECEIVED: ROUND: 2 PICK: 27 & ROUND: 3 PICK: 40
SENT: ROUND: 4 PICK: 22
RECEIVED: ROUND: 4 PICK: 39 & ROUND: 6 PICK: 9
59: Roderick Johnson OT Florida State Jr 6-6 308
79: Ethan Pocic C LSU Sr 6-6 309
86: Joe Mixon RB Oklahoma rSo 6-1 226
104: Obi Melifonwu SS Connecticut rSr 6-3 216
119: Chad Kelly QB Ole Miss Sr 6-2 224
144: Carlos Henderson WR Louisiana Tech rJr 5-11 191
161: Jarron Jones DT Notre Dame rSr 6-5 315
194: Fabian Moreau CB UCLA rSr 6-0 200
200: Dylan Cole OLB Missouri State rSr 6-0 240
235: Jonnu Smith TE Florida International Sr 6-3 232
Joe Williams RB Utah Sr 5-11 205
Keevan Lucas WR Tulsa Sr 5-9 195
Chase Roullier OG Wyoming rSr 6-4 319
Dakota Ball FB Alabama rSr 6-2 268
Peter Bateman OT Minnesota-Duluth Sr 6-5 285
Chunky Clements DT Illinois Sr 6-3 295
Isaac Rochell DE Notre Dame Sr 6-3 290
Avery Moss DE Youngstown State rSr 6-3 265
Jimmie Gilbert OLB Colorado Sr 6-4 230
Pita Taumoepenu OLB Utah Sr 6-1 245
Nathan Gerry SS Nebraska Sr 6-2 220
Kai Nacua FS Brigham Young Sr 6-1 208
QB - Sam Bradford, Teddy Bridgewater, Taylor Heinicke, Chad Kelly*
RB - Adrian Peterson, Jerrick McKinnon, CJ Ham, Bishop Sankey (PS), Joe Mixon*
TE - Kyle Rudolph, David Morgan II, Kyle Carter (PS), Jonnu Smith*
WR - Stephon Diggs, Jarius Wright, Carlos Henderson*, Moritz Boehringer (PS),
WR - Adam Thielen, Laquon Treadwell, Cayleb Jones (PS)
LT - Matt Kalil, Roderick Johnson*, Rashod Hill, Marquis Lucas (PS)
LG - Alex Boone, Zac Kerin, Reid Fragel (PS)
OC - Joe Berger, Nick Easton, Ethan Pocic*
RG - Kevin Zeitler, Jeremiah Sirles, Willie Beavers
RT - Ricky Wagner, TJ Clemmings, Austin Shepherd (PS)
DE - Everson Griffen, Stephen Weatherly, Sterling Bailey (PS)
DT - Sharrif Floyd, Shamar Stephen, Toby Johnson, Abry Jones
DT - Linval Joseph, Tom Johnson, BJ Dubose, Jarron Jones*
DE - Danielle Hunter, Brian Robison, Scott Crichton
SLB - Anthony Barr, Edmond Robinson
MLB - Eric Kendricks, Dylan Cole*
SLB - Kentrell Brothers, Emmanuel Lamur
LCB - Trae Waynes, Terrence Newman, Marcus Sherels
RCB - Xavier Rhodes, Tre Roberson, Jabari Price
SCB - Mackenzie Alexander, Fabian Moreau*
SS - Harrison Smith, Jayron Kearse, Anthony Harris
FS - Andrew Sendejo, Antone Exum, Obi Melifonwu*
P - Taylor Symmank
K - Marshall Koehn, Zane Gonzalez*
LS - Kevin McDermott
Now I realize that many will say that a lot of these players will go well before I have them selected. This could be very true. It is an argument that occurs every year and nothing is going to change.
I know many would not want the Vikings to even consider Mixon. I cannot change those positions. But the kid made a mistake and paid for it (and may pay more) and should get another chance. His talent is undeniable though. If Mike Vick can get a second chance then almost anybody can get a second chance.
Chad Kelly is another player that people have an issue with his character. I think he is talented and would be a good QB to groom and have on the team at least through 2020. He likely sits the bench and learns.
Getting Pocic in the 3rd would be nice and with this likely to be Berger's last year (if he plays at all) it would be a very wise pick IMO.
What are the chances of the Vikings getting Zeitler AND Wagner? Very slim indeed and the money may need to increase. But that would be a pretty good get (on paper) and should solidify the right side of the line at least for a few years.
The Kalil deal only has 5.5 mil guaranteed in the 1st year and is similar to the deals that Russell Okung and Kelvin Beachum signed. If he does well then they would guarantee the next two years. This would make drafting Johnson seem like a waste. But they need insurance and the worst case if that Kalil does indeed play well and they can trade either him or Johnson.
I have argued against bringing back AP but his deal would likely only be guaranteed for a year or two. They could even try to trade him later which would be extremely doubtful. But I think when you see Latavious Murray and Eddie Lacy as other options then you know they will get almost as much as AP. Tough call.
I am always interested in seeing different scenarios using the trades I made.