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Vikings’ offseason plan v1.0

CFP National Championship Presented by AT&T - Ohio State v Alabama Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images

It is time for the first offseason plan. I have been holding out waiting on the final cap number for 2021 but can make do with the “educated guesses” out there. Looking at overthecap, the Vikings have these numbers for the top 51 which is all that matters until the first game ...

https://overthecap.com/calculator/minnesota-vikings/

Top 51 : $192,824,951

Dead : $507,314

Total Top 51 : $193,332,265

Here is an article that makes sound speculation from actual agents that believe the cap will NOT be as low as $175,000,000 which is what overthecap is using now.

https://www.si.com/nfl/packers/news/nfl-salary-cap-might-not-crash-after-all

One agent said the expectation is the cap for 2020 will at least remain steady. Another agent said he expected it to touch $200 million. Another was planning for $195 million.

I have always believed this was going to be the case as it makes too much sense. For this exercise, I am going to go with a cap of $195,000,000.

Total Top 51 : $193,332,265

Projected Cap : $195,000,000

Carryover : $4,526,324

Total Cap : $199,526,324

Remaining : $6,194,059

The Vikings UFA (unrestricted free agent) list is Anthony Harris, Eric Wilson, Rashod Hill, Ameer Abdullah,

Sean Mannion, Dakota Dozier, Todd Davis, Brett Jones, George Iloka, Hardy Nickerson, Jaleel Johnson

The RFA (restricted free agent) list is Ifeadi Odenigbo, Mike Boone, Chad Beebe

The ERFA (exclusive restricted free agent) list is Chris Jones

The 2021 projected salaries for RFA players are ...

1st round : $4,873,000

2nd round : $3,422,000

Original round : $2,240,000

I think who the Vikings keep depends on who gets released or traded.

They probably will give Odenigbo a 2nd round tender offer. I don’t see signing Boone or Beebe to the original round tender because they probably could get them for about 1 mil each after they test the market.

I think Harris will get paid more than what the Vikings should spend. Johnson probably gets a decent offer elsewhere and maybe even more of a chance to play. I’m not too worried about the remaining free agents. Maybe they bring back Hill on a slightly increased deal from 2020 ($1.5 to $2 mil)? The rest are likely minimum level deals.

RELEASES

Reiff is released here which saves $11.75M.

Updated Cap Space : $11.75M + $6.2M = 17.95M


Rudolph is released here which saves $5.1M

Updated Cap Space : $5.1M + $17.95M = $23.05M


Stephen is released here which saves $3.75M

Updated Cap Space : $3.75M + $23.05M = $26.8M


Bailey is released here which saves $1.7M

Updated Cap Space : $1.7M + $26.8M = $28.5M


Barr is released here which saves $7.7M

Updated Cap Space : $7.7M + $28.5M = $36.2M

Note: It is hard to see them leaving Barr’s cap hit as is and I anticipate they may ask him to redo his 2021 salary similar to what they asked Reiff. If he would take a $6M pay cut with the chance to make back 2 or 3 mil via incentives then at least they create some cap room. He did get paid last year when he was hurt which is not his fault but still better for him than the team. Whether or not he accepts, they more than likely will NOT let the remainder of his contract stand. In 2022, he will take a pay cut or get released. Better to go ahead and let him go now although I do prefer a trade. I could come up with an idea (think Jets) but left that out of this version.


EXTENSIONS

Harrison Smith gets a 4 year $33M new deal with an $8M signing bonus and $16.5M guaranteed

His salaries would be $3.25M, $5.25M, $8.25M, & $8.25M

His cap hits would be $5.25M, $7.25M, $10.25M, & $10.25M

This deal is similar to Malcolm Jenkins who signed a 4 year $32M deal at age 32

This lowers his cap hit in 2021 by $5M

Updated Cap Space : $5M + $36.2M = $41.2M


Danielle Hunter gets a 5 year $100M new deal with a $25M signing bonus and $60.5M guaranteed

His salaries would be $7.75M, $7.75M, $20M, $20M, & $20M

His cap hits would be $17.75M, $17.75M, $27M, $25M, & $25M

This puts him as the fifth highest-paid defensive end by average per year behind Bosa, Garrett, Lawrence, and Clark. He will have incentives that give him a lot more.

This leaves his cap hit as is in 2021 & 2022

Updated Cap Space : $41.2M


Brian O’Neill gets a 5 year $55M extension with a $15M signing bonus and $27M guaranteed.

The extension starts in 2022 and ends in 2026.

His salaries would be $2.383M, $3M, $9M, $9M, $9M, & $10M

His cap hits would be $4.7M, $6M, $12M, $12M, $12M, & $10M

This deal puts him as the fifth highest-paid right tackle by average per year behind Lane Johnson, Trenton Brown, Jack Conklin, and Ju’Wuan James.

This raises his cap hit in 2021 by $2M

Updated Cap Space : $41.2 - $2M = $39.2M


Eric Wilson gets a 4 year $30M extension with a $6M signing bonus and $15M guaranteed.

His salaries would be $2.5M, $6.5M, $7.5M, & $7.5M

His cap hits would be $4M, $8M, $9M, & $9M

This deal is similar to the contract Nick Kwiatkoski signed last year which was a 3 year $21M deal

Updated Cap Space : $39.2 - $4M = $35.2M


Ifeadi Odenigbo gets a 2nd round RFA tender offer of $3,422,000

Updated Cap Space : $35.2 - $3.4M = $31.8M


If the cap does not come in at $195M and comes in at $180M then I would have to subtract $15M from the $31.8M remaining.

The Vikings could restructure Adam Thielen by converting $5M of his salary and spreading the cap hit over the next four years. If they did this they would get $3.75M in extra cap space. But we’ll hold off on that for now.

So, assuming the cap does come on at $195M, the Vikings would have $31.8M in cap space to use on outside free agents.


Free Agents

The first free agent is Matt Feiler who has played right tackle and left guard for the Steelers.

Matt Feiler gets a 4 year 30M deal with an $8M signing bonus and $15M guaranteed.

His salaries would be $1.5M, $5.5M, $7M, & $8M

His cap hits would be $3.5M, $7.5M, $9M, & $10M

This deal is similar to Bobby Massie and Billy Turner

Updated Cap Space : $31.8 - $3.5M = $28.3M


The next free agent is Roy Robertson-Harris who plays all over the defensive line but would be a tackle here.

Roy Robertson-Harris gets a 3 year 24M deal with a $7.5M signing bonus and $9M guaranteed.

His salaries would be $1.5M, $7M, & $8M

His cap hits would be $4M, $9.5M, & $10.5M

This deal is similar to David Onyemata and Michael Brockers

Updated Cap Space : $28.3 - $4M = $24.3M


The next free agent is Keanu Neal who played safety for the Falcons

Keanu Neal gets a 3 year 18M deal with a $4.5M signing bonus and $7M guaranteed.

His salaries would be $2.5M, $6M, & $6M

His cap hits would be $4M, $7.5M, & $8M

This deal is similar to Vonn Bell, Jaquiski Tartt, & Ricardo Allen

Updated Cap Space : $24.3 - $4M = $20.3M


It would be nice to sign a free agent corner but the best bet is to wait out the market and get someone for cheap (hopefully).

This plan would leave about $18M in cap space in 2022 if the overall cap is $227.5M as overthecap shows.

If the 2022 cap comes in at $200M then this plan puts the Vikings over by $7M if they carry over all the remaining space.

One thing the Vikings could do to adjust Kirk Cousins’ 2022 cap number is to add a couple of void years and convert some of his $35M salary by spreading it out over 3 years. Let’s say they convert $21M then they would spread $7M per year. His 2022 cap number would drop to $31M and they would gain $14M in cap space. They would have to take $7M cap hits in 2023 & 2024 if he is off the team.

https://twitter.com/corryjoel/status/1352014581305024516

https://twitter.com/corryjoel/status/1352019455346266112


What does the roster look like heading into the draft ...

QB - Kirk Cousins, Sean Mannion, Jake Browning, Nate Stanley

RB - Dalvin Cook, Alexander Mattison

FB - C.J. Ham, Jake Bargas

WR - Adam Thielen, K.J. Osborn, Dan Chisena

WR - Justin Jefferson, Bisi Johnson

TE - Irv Smith, Tyler Conklin, Brandon Dillon, Hale Hentges

LT - Ezra Cleveland, Blake Brandel

LG - Matt Feiler, Kyle Hinton

OC - Garrett Bradbury

RG - Dru Samia, Zack Bailey

RT - Brian O’Neill, Oli Udoh

DE - Danielle Hunter, Kenny Willekes

DE - Ifeadi Odenigbo, D.J. Wonnum, Jordan Brailford

DT - Michael Pierce, Armon Watts, James Lynch

DT - Roy Robertson-Harris, Jalyn Holmes, Hercules Mata’afa

LB - Eric Kendricks, Troy Dye, Blake Lynch

LB - Eric Wilson, Ryan Connelly, Cameron Smith

CB - Mike Hughes, Jeff Gladney, Harrison Hand, Cordrea Tankersly

CB - Cameron Dantzler, Kris Boyd, Tae Hayes, Dylan Mabin

FS - Keanu Neal, Josh Mettelus

SS - Harrison Smith, Myles Dorn, Luther Kirk

P - Britton Colquitt

LS - Andrew DePaola

... not totally set for sure.

RG, WR3, OT, RB look like needs on offense.

DE, DT, LB, CB, & S look like needs on defense.

Pretty much everything eh? Some are for depth though.


Let’s draft shall we ...

Trade Partner: Cincinnati Bengals

Sent:

Round 1 Pick 14

Round 3 Pick 38

Future Round 1 Pick

Future Round 4 Pick

Received:

Round 1 Pick 5

5: R1 P5 QB Justin Fields - Ohio State 6’3” 228

CFP National Championship Presented by AT&T - Ohio State v Alabama Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

78: R3 P14 WR Kadarius Toney - Florida 5’11’’ 189

SEC Championship - Alabama v Florida Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

90: R3 P26 C Landon Dickerson - Alabama 6’6’’ 326

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 12 Alabama at Texas A&M Photo by Daniel Dunn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

116: R4 P14 TE Hunter Long - Boston College 6’5.1” 254

NCAA Football: Boston College at Duke Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports

122: R4 P20 S Divine Deablo - Virginia Tech 6’3.3” 226

Virginia Tech v Florida State Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

131: R4 P29 OT Spencer K. Brown - Northern Iowa 6’8.4” 314

NCAA Football: Northern Iowa at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

154: R5 P13 DL Marlon Tuipulotu - USC 6’1.6” 308

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 09 Stanford at USC Photo by John Cordes/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Love those uniforms!


168: R5 P27 CB Ifeatu Melifonwu - Syracuse 6’2.5” 212

Syracuse v Maryland Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

194: R6 P15 EDGE Adetokunbo Ogundeji - Notre Dame 6’4.3” 256

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 23 Boston College at Notre Dame Photo by Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

221: R6 P42 WR Trevon Grimes - Florida 6’3.7” 217

Arkansas vs Florida Photo by Courtney Culbreath/Collegiate Images/Getty Images

236: R7 P14 DL Dayo Odeyingbo - Vanderbilt 6’5” 276

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 30 Vanderbilt at Florida Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

This plan and mock follows along with what I did with the latest drafttek mock ...

I know many will ask why trade up for Fields and waste draft picks? A fair question indeed.

I believe the team will NOT be as bad the next year or two due to players returning and younger players hopefully getting better. I do not anticipate drafting as high as #14.

Also, the Quarterback class in the 2022 Draft is weak. Very weak. Now is the time to strike or else they probably wait until 2023 or hope to find some late-round gem.

If they can get Fields, Wilson, or Lance (all 3 probably will require a trade-up) then the player can sit behind Cousins and learn. Rodger sat for 3 years. Mahomes sat for a year.

I found out that the Vikings could add void years to Cousins deal next year to lower his 2022 $45M cap hit. They may also try to trade him. They probably would restructure his deal by giving him a $10M roster bonus before trading him. That way, the new team only has to pay $25M to Cousins in 2022. The Vikings would eat $20M in dead money but would save $25M in cap space. Lots of options.

I like Dickerson a lot and he is able to play center and guard on the offensive line. The Vikings need someone who can play center if Bradbury gets dinged up or does not pan out.

I like adding more receivers because the depth at receiver is not very good. It is just OK at best.

You still need to draft a safety even if you sign a veteran to replace Harris. There just is no depth besides Mettelus and Dorn who may or may not work out.

Spencer Brown is a large tackle and hopefully could fill the void if Rashod Hill is not brought back.

The defensive line additions are self-explanatory and this year, there really is not a lot of value in taking one early.

** I do realize that many of these players will go earlier. **


An alternate mock ...

TRADES

Trade Partner: Cincinnati Bengals

Sent:

Round 1 Pick 14

Round 4 Pick 14

Future Round 1 Pick

Future Round 3 Pick

Received:

Round 1 Pick 5

Round 7 Pick 5

5: R1 P5 QB Justin Fields - Ohio State

78: R3 P14 S Hamsah Nasirildeen - Florida State

90: R3 P26 WR D’Wayne Eskridge - Western Michigan

102: R3 P38 EDGE Payton Turner - Houston

122: R4 P20 S Richie Grant - UCF

131: R4 P29 G Royce Newman - Mississippi

154: R5 P13 C Quinn Meinerz - Wisconsin-Whitewater

168: R5 P27 DL Alim McNeill - NC State

194: R6 P15 DL Adetokunbo Ogundeji - Notre Dame

221: R6 P42 OT Dillon Radunz - North Dakota State

227: R7 P5 DL Ta’Quon Graham - Texas

236: R7 P14 WR Marquez Stevenson - Houston


Well, there you go. Another wanna-be GM plan where most of it will not occur. I have another where they keep almost everybody besides Rudolph (who basically is asking to be let go) and Bailey.