Like many teams with a top-flight running back, the Vikings are in a bit of a quandary when it comes to a potential extension for Dalvin Cook. Cook has been susceptible to injury throughout his young career, but after a breakout 2019 that saw him rack up 1,135 yards and 13 TDs for the run-first Minnesota offense, we heard that the team would explore an extension for him this offseason.
Cook, 24, is now eligible for a new contract since he has three years of service time, and the $1.3MM he is due to make in 2020 — the last year of his rookie deal — is a pittance relative to his value. Courtney Cronin of ESPN.com details the pros and cons of a Cook re-up, but it sounds like GM Rick Spielman wants to keep the 2017 second-rounder in the fold for the long haul.
“Right now, we have so much ahead of us and a lot of decisions to make before free agency begins and the new league year begins, and then we look at the draft once we settle down and everything,” Spielman said. “But I consider Dalvin as one of those core group of players that we definitely want to try to keep.”
Negotiations could get complicated, but expect the Vikings to start talking with Cook’s reps not long after the draft.
Now for more out of Minnesota:
- Punter Britton Colquitt expects to re-sign with the Vikings, per Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Colquitt turned in a strong performance in 2019, his first year with Minnesota, and the Vikes — who have deployed four punters in the past four seasons — are seeking stability. It sounds as if the two sides are close on a three-year deal that would pay Colquitt between $2-3MM per season.
- The Vikings are interested in re-signing right tackle Rashod Hill, per Cronin (via Twitter). Hill, a former UDFA, is eligible for unrestricted free agency, but Minnesota values his contributions as a swing tackle and his abilities in pass protection. It will be interesting to see if a RT-needy team on a budget takes a flier on Hill as a potential starter.
- The Vikings also want to keep center Brett Jones, as Tomasson tweets. Jones started 13 games as recently as 2017, when he was a member of the Giants, and Minnesota acquired him via trade with New York in August 2018. He started the first three games of the 2018 season but was displaced by Pat Elflein, who was returning from injury, and when the Vikings selected Garrett Bradbury in the first round of the 2019 draft, Jones was again relegated to a reserve role. He was actually cut in September to make room for Josh Doctson, and though he re-signed shortly thereafter, he appeared in just two games and was ultimately put on IR. Per Tomasson, Jones wants to test the market in search of a shot at a starting job.