If Riley Reiff wants to stick around Minnesota, it sounds like he’ll have to take a pay cut. Chris Tomasson of TwinCities.com writes that the Vikings lineman “likely would need to take a pay cut for the second straight year to remain with the team.” In a separate tweet, Tomasson notes that the organization is “hoping to restructure” the veteran’s contract.
The Vikings left tackle is set to have a salary cap number of $14.95MM in 2021, and Tomasson believes some decision will be made before he’s owed a guaranteed $5MM roster bonus on March 19. If the organization decides to release him prior to that date, they can save a total of $11.75MM between his roster bonus, workout bonus, and $6.55MM base salary. On the books, they’d be left with just $2.2MM in dead money, the sum of his prorated bonus.
The 2012 first-round pick out of Iowa spent the first five seasons of his career with the Lions. He joined the Vikings on a massive five-year, $58.75MM deal prior to the 2017 season, and he’s been a consistent presence on the offensive line over the past four seasons. He’s missed six total regular season games over that span, and he would have appeared in 100-percent of his team’s offensive snaps in 2020 if not for a stint on the COVID-19 list to end the 2020 campaign.
If the Vikings were to move on from Reiff, they’d have some options to replace him. As Tomasson writes, right guard Ezra Cleveland played left tackle during his time at Boise State, or the team could look to move right tackle Brian O’Neill. With the latter, the front office will have to be wary of an impending extension, as a move to left tackle could boost O’Neill’s earnings.
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