The Vikings began the week with about $1.748 million in salary cap space, before a flurry of moves designed to modify several position groups and (most notably) add a new kicker to the roster following the release of Daniel Carlson.
Now that the dust has (mostly) settled on those moves, the Vikings find their financial position to be especially snug. According to sources with access to NFLPA salary data, the Vikings have about $150,000 left in salary cap space after the release of tackle David Parry, who was cut to make room for Tom Johnson.
Parry was on a non-guaranteed deal worth $630,000, and his release should leave $113,971 of dead money on the Vikings’ cap. Johnson’s deal with the Vikings is worth $1 million for the season, and will be paid at a prorated rate throughout the year, leaving him with a non-guaranteed contract worth $882,353.
The Vikings’ biggest bill of the week, of course, was at the kicker position, where they’ll pay Dan Bailey $1.75 million for the season (at a prorated rate on a total deal of $1,983,333). They incurred $118,474 of cap charges for the release of Daniel Carlson, and will absorb another $186,009 of dead money on Carlson’s contract in the 2019 league year, when the final three years of his signing bonus prorations hit the cap.
For the season, the Vikings are devoting $2,018,474 of cap space to three different kickers (Bailey, Carlson and Kai Forbath).
Special teams coordinator Mike Priefer said this week the team “absolutely” would have signed Bailey last offseason had he been available, and it’s likely the Vikings won’t quibble about the cost of the kicker position if they’ve in fact been able to solve it.
Wide receiver Stacy Coley, who was released by the Vikings on Tuesday, was claimed by the Giants, where former Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur is now the head coach
. On Wednesday, the Vikings also quietly released safety Jack Tocho, who had been on the practice squad/injured list.
What does all this mean for the Vikings’ financial picture the rest of the year?
They’ve got enough players with non-guaranteed deals, and enough ingenuity in their football operations department, that they’ll likely find ways to turn over the spots at the bottom of the roster, should they need to make additional moves. They’ll have limited ability to do anything more significant than that, however, absent a contract restructuring with one of their veterans to free up cap space.
The Vikings also won’t carry over much cap space into the 2019 league year, though they’ll likely worry about those problems later. They believed this week’s set of moves helped them fine-tune their roster after Sunday’s tie in Green Bay, and they’ll hope their evaluations were correct.