Minnesota Vikings News Roundup: Spielman Creates Cap Space
The Minnesota Vikings officially have some cap space. True, the finances could still be more plentiful, but Rick Spielman at least has some room to operate. NFL teams will enter the legal tampering period on Monday, so Spielman is going to be very busy. The good people at Over the Cap suggest that the Vikings have a little less than $10 million to work with. Expect the Vikings to free up a few more dollars in the coming days.
Cuts and Rumors of Cuts
The biggest news is the Dan Bailey and Riley Reiff cuts. When partnered with the Kyle Rudolph cut, the Bailey/Reiff release gives Minnesota some room to breathe. It’s disappointing to see all three go, especially Reiff. That said, it was predictable that all three would either need to accept a restructured deal or need to find a new team. The Vikings created some more room by getting Britton Colquitt to agree to a pay cut.
There is rumor and speculation about what the Vikings might do to create more cap space. I’ll be shocked if the Vikings don’t reach an extension with Harrison Smith, one that lowers his hit this season while also keeping him in a purple uniform for a least a couple more seasons.
Another big name to consider is Anthony Barr, who is going to count for more than $15 million against this year’s cap. We should all have a greater appreciation for his value after this past season; the defense took a massive step back this season, and Barr’s absence was a big part of that. Be that as it may, Barr doesn’t justify such a high number, especially within the context of the Covid Cap.
It’s clear that Mike Zimmer really loves what Barr brings to the defense. What’s not as clear is whether ownership will allow for salary cap tomfoolery to lower Barr’s cap hit. If Zim really is on the hot seat (which is likely), then there is a pretty reasonable chance he won’t be coaching the Vikings beyond this season. As a result, the Wilfs may prohibit Spielman from getting too creative with his cap solutions for Barr. A new coach is unlikely to value Barr as much as Zim, so kicking more of Barr’s money into future years may not be appealing to the Wilfs. It’s a tricky situation. In all likelihood, Barr will be back in 2021. The intrigue rests in whether Zim and Spielman will have the freedom to get his cap hit to a more reasonable number.
The Vikings are a top-heavy roster. Adding talent through the draft is therefore a necessity.
Earlier this week, the Vikings were officially awarded a couple compensatory picks. They now have an extra 4th and 6th round pick. Overall, Minnesota heads into the draft with twelve picks. It’s not the fifteen from last year, but it’s still a really big number.
If several quarterbacks get taken in the top 10, Minnesota is going to have a handful of really intriguing players fall to 14th. In other words, Spielman may be inclined to trade back to accumulate even more draft picks. The goal would likely be to drop back in the first while picking up a second. Minnesota has lots of solid players. What we really need is more impact players. Generally speaking, these players get chosen high in the draft. My hope is that Spielman either gets a true contributor at 14 or that he leverages the 14th pick to get two rock-solid players in the late first and perhaps the second.
TVG and Purple Partners
A lot of the focus this week at TVG has been on the moves that our Minnesota Vikings made to create salary cap space. We covered the aforementioned Bailey and Reiff decisions, but we also took some time for players from outside Minnesota’s building. The Vikings have some options at guard, and Carl Lawson would be a great addition to the defensive line. We even had a podcast episode covering the calm before the offseason storm.
Meanwhile, the Purple Partners continue doing their thing. Fans who are looking for a Vikings forum might give Purple Pain Forums a shot. Vikings fans might also be interested in checking out the Vikings Report with Drew & Ted. UFFda! Sports has recently launched Franchise Tagged, a general NFL news site the folks should consider supporting.
Thanks for stopping by for this week’s Minnesota Vikings News Roundup, valued reader. Our Minnesota Vikings have some modest cap space. Let’s collectively hope they use it wisely. Skol.