The Vikings Can Double Their Cap Space with 3 Moves

Every Draft Pick Kwesi Adofo-Mensah Has Played a Role in Making
Nov 24, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah looks on before the game against the New England Patriots at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sport.

The Minnesota Vikings saw a pretty major change in their financial situation this offseason.

Instead of scraping together cash through roster cuts in order to become salary cap compliant, the Vikings actually began the 2024 offseason in the green. This is something that hasn’t happened for multiple years, and it came in 2024 despite massive amounts of dead money being owed to names like Kirk Cousins, Marcus Davenport, and Danielle Hunter.

Through the opening phases of free agency, the Vikings are still sitting in a pretty solid spot in terms of their finances. Minnesota still holds right around $16.8 million in cap space this offseason, per Over the Cap, which ranks 17th in the NFL. If desired, though, that number can climb much higher.

How the Vikings Salary Cap Space Can Double

Vikings Salary Cap
Jul 27, 2022; Eagan, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah looks on at TCO Performance Center. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

The first step in doubling Minnesota’s cap space could involve another restructure of Brian O’Neill’s contract. The Vikings right tackle is slated to carry a $22.9 million cap hit this year, which is more than any other player on Minnesota’s roster.

Of course, restructuring O’Neill’s contract would push more money into future years, but it would save a tad over $8.9 million for the Vikings in 2024. For reference, OTC estimates that the Vikings will need to pay their draft class around $13.4 million this year (assuming they make two first-round selections), so by restructuring O’Neill’s deal they can mostly take care of that.

RT Brian O'Neill
Nov 24, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings offensive tackle Brian O’Neill (75) celebrates the win after the game against the New England Patriots at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Sticking with the restructuring theme, T.J. Hockenson could be another player to see his contract restructured in order to save the Vikings some money. Hockenson, who tore his ACL and MCL last December, could be set to miss a portion of this season because of his injuries, so he makes sense as a restructure candidate.

If the Vikings were to do this, they would save $7.1 million against the salary cap for this year, meaning the two moves involving Hockenson and O’Neill by themselves would create a touch more than $16 million in cap space.

For a final move, the Vikings could do just about anything in order to officially reach that ~$800,000 of additional money needed to entirely double their salary cap space. For instance, restructuring Garrett Bradbury’s contract, who signed a new deal last spring and is set to carry a cap hit of just over $5.7 million, could save the Vikings $2.7 million in 2024.

Busy 2nd Day
Oct 2, 2022; London, United Kingdom; Minnesota Vikings center Garrett Bradbury (56) during the NFL International Series game at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter van den Berg-USA TODAY Sports

Overall, this trio of moves would create $18.735 million for Minnesota to utilize, causing the Vikings’ salary cap space to balloon all the way to $36.3 million. Of course, the only reason that Minnesota should perform these moves is if they have a plan for using it.

Restructuring deals inevitably kicks money into future years, so the Vikings should be careful about doing such moves too often. Regardless, if Minnesota sees a situation where they need to open up a large chunk of cap space in the coming months, they have multiple ways to do so.

Editor’s Note: Statistics for this article were found via Over the Cap.

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.