I will be doing a series of articles that will be taking a methodical team by team approach to next year’s possible free agents. I will be starting with the team that has the least amount of salary cap space and ending with the team with the most. I will try to give a brief description of as many of the possible free agents as I can. I will also be looking for players that might be salary cap cuts in order for their teams to make room to sign some of these possible free agents. Any information anyone else can contribute on these players would be very much appreciated.
The Minnesota Vikings are projected to be $24,827,659 UNDER the cap (all salary info via Over The Cap) for 2017 and have 42 players under contract. Is Joe Berger really the highlight?
(EastBayNinerFan has the combined total of the salary cap surplus carry over from 2016 and the cap space for 2017 as $24,973,933)
Dollar figures listed are player’s 2016 cap hit.
LT Matt Kalil - $11,096,000
Matt Kalil is 27 years old and was drafted by the Vikings in the first round of the 2012 draft. He is currently playing on his fifth year option. Maybe the Vikings will use the franchise tag on him if they can’t come to an agreement in 2017? Kilil is on injured reserve with a hip injury. He has not rated out that well by Pro Football Focus in the last three years.
CB Captain Munnerlyn - $4,583,334
Captain Munnerlyn is 28 years old and was originally drafted by the Panthers in the seventh round of the 2009 draft. Munnerlyn signed a three year contract with the Vikings in 2014. He has 49 tackles and two passes defended this season. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the 40th best CB.
RT Andre Smith - $3,468,750
Andre Smith is 29 years old and was originally drafted by the Bengals in the first round of the 2009 draft. Smith signed a one year contract with the Vikings in May and started the first four games of the season before suffering a torn bicep in game four and being placed on injured reserve. His Pro Football Focus grades have fallen way off the last two years.
QB Shaun Hill - $3,250,000
Shaun Hill is 36 years old and was originally picked up by the Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2002 before playing with the 49ers, Lion, and Rams, and eventually returning to the Vikings. Would an old backup like Shaun Hill be better than any of the quarterbacks we have on the team? Oh wait! Haven’t we already been down that road? Hill has a career completion percentage of 61.8 percent and a career quarterback rating of 85.
43OLB Chad Greenway - $2,750,000
Chad Greenway is 33 years old and was drafted by the Vikings in the first round of the 2006 draft. Chad Greenway has publicly announced that this will be his last season. Have a great retirement, Chad.
CB Terence Newman - $3,000,000
Terence Newman is 38 years old and was originally drafted by the Cowboys in the first round of the 2003 draft. Newman is on his second of two one year contracts with the Vikings. He has 32 tackles and 7 passes defended this season. Are cornerbacks really suppose to be doing this kind of stuff at 38?
LT Michael Harris - $2,470,586
Michael Harris is 28 years old and was originally picked up by the Chargers as an undrafted free agent in 2012. Harris was picked up by the Vikings in August of 2014 after being released by the Chargers. He was placed on the reserve/NFI list in the preseason. He really hasn’t done much in his career.
WR Corderrelle Patterson - $2,297,605
Corderrelle Patterson is 25 years old and was drafted by the Vikings in the first round of the 2013 draft. Patterson has 44 receptions for 352 yards this season. He had a career high numbers in 2013 with 45 receptions for 469 yards. He is 6’2” and weighs 222 pounds.
TE Rhett Ellison - $1,850,625
Rhet Ellison is 28 years old and was drafted by the Vikings in the fourth round of the 2o12 draft. Rhett has nine receptions for 57 yards so far this year with a career highs in 2014 of 19 receptions for 208 yards. Not very big numbers!
FB Zach Line - $1,671,000
Zach Line is 26 years old and was picked up by the Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2013. FB? We don’t need “no stinkin” fullback.
C Joe Berger - $1,435,000
Joe Berger is 34 years old and was originally drafted by the Panthers in the sixth round of the 2005 draft. Berger signed with the Viking in 2011 after being released by the Dolphins. He started all 16 games in 2015 after John Sullivan was placed on injured reserve in the preseason and then beat Sullivan out for the starting position this season. Pro Football Focus has Berger as being the 6th best center this year.
LT Jake Long - $324,941
Jake Long is 31 years old and was originally drafted by the Dolphins in the first round of the 2008 draft. Long signed a one year contract with the Vikings in October and he suffered a season ending torn Achilles in November. With past back problems and two ALC injuries, he is a bit beaten up at this point in his career.
ILB Audie Cole - $680,000
Audie Cole is 27 years old and was drafted by the Vikings in the seventh round of the 2012 draft. Audie has 10 tackles this season. You don’t get many snaps when you play behind Eric Kendricks
RB Matt Asiata - $840,000
Matt Asiata is 29 years old and was picked up by the Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2011. Asiata has five starts and 105 rushing attempts in Adrian Peterson’s absence but only has 354 yards and no touchdowns to show for it for a dismal 3.3 yards per carry average.
43DE Justin Trattou - $650,000
Matt Trattou is 28 years old and was originally picked up by the Giants as an undrafted free agent in 2011. Trattou was signed up by the Vikings in October of 2013. He has three tackles this year and it appears to be a banner year for him.
P Jeff Locke - $721,048
Jeff Locke is 27 years old and was drafted by the Vikings in the fifth round of the 2013 draft. Locke has a 43.1 yard average this season with 40 net yards per punt. He only has three punts that have made their way into the end zone.