NFC Notes: Cardinals, D. Johnson, Vikings

After losing the majority of the 2017 season to injury, extension talks between David Johnson and the Cardinals could prove to be tricky. When healthy in 2016, Johnson was one of the very best running backs in the NFL. The Cardinals understand Johnson’s importance to the team, but there could be a divide between the two sides when it comes to money.

With that in mind, Hardik Sanghavi of Over The Cap took a stab at estimating a proper extension for Johnson. He believes a five-year extension with $48.75MM in new money ($9.75MM/year) and $19.5MM in full guarantees would get the job done. That deal would allow Johnson to top Devonta Freeman‘s annual average and three-year cash flow, while giving the Cardinals a lengthy period of control.

Johnson, in theory, could play out his final year under contract and push for more money down the road, but he’d lose the security of an extension and be subject to two consecutive franchise tags, which would preclude him from free agency until after the 2020 season.

For more on Johnson’s potential deal, check out Ben Levine’s recent look at the running back as an extension candidate.

Here’s more from the NFC:

  • Tackle Riley Reiff, who signed a five-year, $58.75MM free agent deal with the Vikings last year, is among the players in Minnesota who must live up to his contract this year, Andrew Krammer of the Star Tribune writes. Last year, Case Keenum was the third-most pressured quarterback in the NFL (39.3%), and part of that blame falls on the shoulders of Reiff, who is the leader of the offensive line. Reiff started the year strong, but his performance tailed off in the second half of the season, so he’ll look to get back on track this September. Reiff, the eighth-highest paid left tackle in the NFL, graded out as Pro Football Focus’ No. 59 ranked tackle in 2017.
  • Both Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter and GM Jason Licht are on the hot seat this year, ESPN.com’s Mike Triplett opines. The Bucs were the only NFC South team to miss the playoffs last year and that was a disappointment considering their abundance of young talent. The Bucs did manage to win nine games in an injury-plagued 2016 season, but patience could quickly wear out if the team falters this year. Of course, Jameis Winston‘s three-game suspension to start the year won’t help matters.
  • Linebacker Junior Galette seems to think that he could potentially re-sign with the Redskins.
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