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Minnesota Vikings News and Links, 3 August 2023

“As empty vessels make the loudest sound, so they that have the least wit are the greatest blabbers.” — Plato

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Minnesota Vikings v Chicago Bears Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images

We got the Danielle Hunter contract details and they are about what should have been expected given the cap space (18.1M or so) and his dead money in 2024 (11.24M) before the extension.

He gets a 10M salary, a 5.5M signing bonus, 1.5M in per game roster bonuses (total 17M) and 3M in incentives which probably will be NLTBE (not likely to be earned and will count against the 2024 cap).

The team now has 10.27M in cap space according to overthecap.

An extension for Hockenson will most likely include a signing bonus of 10-15M and a low first year salary that would save the team as much as 5M in cap space which woul dincrease the cap space to 15M.

An extension for Jefferson will most likely include a signing bonus north of 20M (I think 30M) and they could use an option bonus in 2024. This would cost about 5M to 8M in cap space.

The team would still have plenty to make any other minor moves, pay the practice squad, and account for the 52nd and 53rd spots on the roster which count agianst the in-season salary cap.

Right now, if Cousins, Hunter, and Davenport all sign with another team next year, the Vikings will eat 50M in dead money cap charges. Extensions for these players will obviously alleviate that part but it essentially will push those dead money charges out to other years depending on the contract structures.

But, it does represent flexibility no?

Since yore last open thread ...

Vikings 2023 Training Camp Megathread


Vikings sign OT Christian DiLauro, waive OT Sam Schlueter


State of the Vikings - Safeties with Smith, Bynum, Metellus & Company


Other Vikings stuff ...

Report: Vikings bring in RB Jacques Patrick for workout


Vikings Poised to Add Ex-Rushing Champ After Mattison Injury


Former Vikings QB to Start in Hall of Fame Game on Thursday

Former Vikings quarterback Kellen Mond will start for the Browns in the Hall of Fame game against the Jets on Thursday night, Cleveland head coach Kevin Stefanski announced this week. He’ll play the first half and then give way to rookie Dorian Thompson-Robinson after halftime.


Vikings training camp notes: Cousins enjoys offense’s consistency, OC talks Jefferson’s impact and more

“Make sure that you go home every night and make improvements. That’s really where my focus is, where our focus is,” said quarterback Kirk Cousins.
“I can be thinking about the play clock, thinking about the defensive personnel, thinking about our offensive personnel, the situation while he’s calling the play. Kind of multi-process while I’m hearing the play. It used to be ‘shut out the whole world, OK, let me hear this play’ to make sure I can call it in the huddle,” Cousins said.
Offensive coordinator Wes Phillips mentioned that having a receiver like Jefferson allowed for players like tight end T.J. Hockenson, another elite pass catcher, to sneak by.
“Justin gets a lot of attention. Other guys gotta step up and win, and T.J.’s that guy,” Phillips said.


Trade Proposal Lands Vikings $34 Million QB

The Minnesota Vikings need an off-ramp for the Kirk Cousins era. The veteran quarterback will be 35 before the season starts, and the team continues to push more of his money into the future in the form of void years.
The problem is that this is a team that shouldn’t be bad enough in the foreseeable future to be in position to draft a blue-chip quarterback prospect. That would require a massive trade like the one the San Francisco 49ers did to move from No. 12 to 3 in the 2021 draft.
Or they could give up much less to take on the very quarterback the Niners did that move for.
Trey Lance remains a man of mystery for the most part. Between waiting behind Jimmy Garoppolo and suffering a season-ending ankle injury, he’s only attempted a little over 100 passes and made four starts.

It just wont die!


Vikings Make Final Decision After Top Free Agent Visits: Report

The Star Tribune’s Ben Goessling reported the same day that “there could be a deal at some point,” but he wouldn’t “expect one is imminent.”


Zulgad’s four-and-out: Thoughts on Dalton Risner’s visit, Andrew Booth Jr.’s place on the depth chart and Justin Jefferson going all out in practice

What’s interesting about Risner’s visit — he reportedly left without signing a deal — is the timing. The Vikings are set to return their starting offensive line from last season, including left guard Ezra Cleveland and right guard Ed Ingram. Both were second-round picks by Minnesota, with Cleveland entering his fourth season and Ingram his second.
If the Vikings just wanted to kick the tires on Risner, why didn’t they do it during the offseason? Risner also doesn’t seem like a guy who would be signed to be a backup, having started all 62 games he played during his four seasons with the Broncos.
Although Ingram struggled during his rookie season, he was drafted by general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and started every game last season. It would make more sense that if someone’s job is in jeopardy it’s Cleveland’s.
Cleveland is a good run blocker but struggles in pass protection; Risner is better in pass pro but not as good in run blocking. Maybe the Vikings made a late decision that keeping Kirk Cousins upright would be a good idea. We saw just how bad Cousins got beat up last season in the “Quarterback” series on Netflix.
While it’s far from certain that Risner will end up with the Vikings, his visit indicates there is concern about the interior portion of the line and addressing it is a possibility.


Vikings Rookie Jordan Addison Impresses in First Week of Training Camp

Vikings rookie wide receiver Jordan Addison has returned to action in training camp and left no mistake as to why he was a first-round pick in this year’s draft.
Addison, the No. 23 overall pick out of USC, has already worked his way up to getting heavy reps with the first-team offense (although Jalen Nailor’s injury may have played a role in that). As advertised, he’s a bit undersized and isn’t going to jump out of the gym, but he’s shown off all the traits that have the Vikings believing he has star potential at this level. Addison is a shifty, twitchy athlete who runs crisp routes and has reliable hands.

NFL News

State of the NFL running back: Why position is no longer valued as much, how we got to this point


2023 NFL preseason: Five things to watch for in Jets-Browns Pro Football Hall of Fame Game


Ex-Browns QB Baker Mayfield Gets Bad News on NFL Future


2023 NFL season: Which RBs could break out in Year 2?


NFL quarterback kryptonite: The biggest weaknesses for all NFC starting QBs in 2023

Kryptonite: Intangibles
Expectations were for Cousins to take his game to a new level under Kevin O’Connell last season, and while that didn’t quite happen, he did pass for more than 4,500 yards and 29 touchdowns. Still, it felt like a relatively underwhelming campaign for him, given those expectations.
Cousins is, by pretty much any measure, an outstanding quarterback, but there’s also always the lingering feeling of something intangible being missing that separates him from the best in the game. When ranking lists get made, Cousins often struggles to crack the top 10 more than he threatens the front of the pack. Ultimately, it’s difficult to identify the ways that he isn’t an elite quarterback, except to hide behind the ambiguity of “intangibles,” but maybe the aggregate of a series of small margins will get you to the same place.

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