Vikings’ First Roster Decision Won’t Come on Monday After All

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Carolina Panthers
Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings enter the 2024 offseason with a number of roster decisions to make.

On Monday, it appeared that the first of the major moves was set to be decided. One of the many pending free agents on Minnesota’s current roster is pass rusher Marcus Davenport, but the Vikings had an opportunity to offer him an extension in order to maintain him for at least another year.

However, while Davenport’s contract was set to void on Monday, it appears that the Vikings have decided to push back that decision regarding his contract.

Vikings First Roster Decision Stays Pending

Roster Decision
Oct 1, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Minnesota Vikings linebacker Marcus Davenport (0) pressures Carolina Panthers quarterback Bryce Young (9) in the third quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Seifert of ESPN tweeted on Monday afternoon, “Update: The Vikings re-negotiated the void date on Marcus Davenport’s deal this weekend. It now matches the expiration date for the deals of Kirk Cousins and Danielle Hunter (3/13). A little more time to see if there is any common ground. Davenport’s deal will NOT void today.”

Davenport signed a one-year deal with the Vikings last spring worth a total of $13 million. However, only $6.2 million of that money went on the books for the 2023 season, and the rest was spread across four void years in $1.7 million increments. Essentially, this opened the possibility of Minnesota giving Davenport an extension if he were to play well in 2023.

The Vikings made this signing in the aftermath of Za’Darius Smith’s sudden request to leave the Vikings. The veteran was eventually traded to the Cleveland Browns, thus opening the door for Davenport to start in Smith’s place.

That plan was quickly put on hold, though. Davenport appeared on the Week 1 injury report with an ankle injury, and he was held out of the season opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Best Move of the Vikings Offseason
Sep 25, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; New Orleans Saints defensive end Marcus Davenport (92) rush off the field against the Carolina Panthers during the second half at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Injuries haven’t exactly been uncommon for Davenport throughout his NFL career. The pass rusher missed at least three games in each of his first four seasons with the New Orleans Saints, and he missed two more during the 2022 season.

Unfortunately for the Vikings, that trend continued in 2023. After missing the season opener, he would go on to play just four snaps in Week 2 against the Philadelphia Eagles and miss the Week 3 matchup against the Los Angeles Chargers.

Davenport played 45+ snaps in each of Weeks 4 and 5, but once again, an ankle injury forced him out of Minnesota’s Week 6 game against the Chicago Bears. That game would prove to be his final appearance of the 2023 season as Davenport was placed on IR in the days after the conclusion of that game.

NFL: Kansas City Chiefs at Minnesota Vikings
Oct 8, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) throws a pass as Minnesota Vikings linebacker Marcus Davenport (0) and defensive tackle Harrison Phillips (97) rush during the third quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

That game may have proven to be Davenport’s final game in a Vikings uniform if he indeed is headed to free agency. However, by extending the void date of the contract, the two sides have ultimately decided to give themselves more time before reaching a conclusion for 2024 and beyond. An extension is still possible in the coming weeks.

Davenport will turn 28 years old on September 4th.

Editor’s Note: Statistics for this article were found via Pro Football Reference.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.