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Salary Cap implications for Laquon Treadwell and Daniel Carlson

A lot of fans would like to see Carlson and Treadwell walk the plank. Is it even financially viable?

Minnesota Vikings v Green Bay Packers Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

After the Minnesota Vikings tied the Green Bay Packers 29-29 yesterday, a lot of the post game frustrations were taken out on two players, for the most part: K Daniel Carlson and WR Laquon Treadwell.

Carlson missed three field goals, including two in overtime, and the last one was practically a chip shot from 35 yards that would have capped an improbable comeback win.

‘Cut Carlson and Treadwell’, fans are saying this morning. I think they’re misguided and shouldn’t be just mercilessl—what’s that? Nothing dies on Twitter?

I don’t know what you mean.

Oh. Well, this is awkward. In my defense, Kai Forbath would have totally made that last kick, though.

Now that my bewilderment over that crazy game has subsided, let’s take a look at at the salaries both these guys are making. First, we’ll look at Treadwell. All images and numbers taken off of Spotrac:

Right now, the Vikings are $4 million under the cap. If they cut Treadwell, his cap hit goes from $2.7 million to $5.8 million. That’s a lot of extra dead money, and unless they re-work deals with other players to free some cap money up, this doesn’t seem very plausible. It would be a classic ‘cut off your nose to spite your face’ move, and it would leave the Vikings thin at WR with no realistic way to sign a free agent. So no, I don’t see the team making a roster move with Treadwell.

But Carlson, on the other hand, is a different story. Let’s take a look:

If the Vikings were to ‘go in another direction’, as the saying goes, the cap hit and dead cap implications would be minimal, so it’s something that I’m sure is at least being discussed this morning at Winter Park the TCO Performance Center.

And that discussion is a fairly straightforward one: Do they keep working with Carlson to try and get him straightened out, or do they cut bait? If they keep him, and he misses another game winning field goal, then what? Or is this ‘a thing’ now, and will it be something he struggles with, much like Blair Walsh did a couple seasons back? I don’t know, but this quote from Carlson seems telling this early in the season:

I know a lot of people wanted Forbath gone, but he was a mostly reliable kicker who made arguably the biggest kick in Vikings history against New Orleans in the playoffs last year. I always thought it was a risk to place the fate of a Super Bowl caliber team on the foot of a rookie kicker, and it’s cost them a win two weeks in to the season.

I don’t know that I’m willing to let Carlson figure it out. I see the talent though, and it’s a fair argument to think he can work through it and become a good kicker. Wins in the NFL are hard to come by, and the Vikings weren’t asking Carlson to kick a 55 yarder into the wind, in December. It was 35 yards, from the center of the field, in perfect conditions, with the game on the line.

You have to make those. Have to.


What should the Vikings do with Daniel Carlson?

This poll is closed

  • 14%
    Keep him—he’s a good kicker and he’ll figure it out.
    (1189 votes)
  • 85%
    Cut him—the Vikings can’t afford the risk.
    (6768 votes)
7957 votes total Vote Now