According to Tom Pelissero of USA Today, the Vikings are currently attempting to trade John Sullivan, their veteran center that is now thought to be fully healthy.
The #Vikings are trying to trade center John Sullivan, per sources. He’s healthy now. Some veteran help available.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) August 29, 2016
Minnesota is in the process of cutting their roster down to 75 players, and we’ll have updates up on that shortly, but the Sullivan move is certainly interesting from a number of angles.
He is entering the second year of a three year deal and carries a 2016 cap hit of $5.833 million, but the contract was largely front-loaded and cutting him would result in dead cap space of only $666,667. Those numbers are all courtesy of Spotrac.
The attempt to trade the 31 year old Sullivan (I believe Pelissero – there’s never been a reason not to) signals that the Vikings have faith in Joe Berger to man the center of the offensive line again this season, and perhaps beyond.
Berger is 34 years old, however, so there is no promises that he is a long-term solution at the position. Nick Easton and Zac Kerin are currently the other options available on the roster, one of which will almost certainly be retained for depth if Sullivan is indeed shipped out. Easton seems like the likely candidate.
No trades are ever a sure thing in the NFL, as it takes two to tango, but there has been some speculation that the Vikings could find a willing trade partner in the Houston Texans after starter Nick Martin underwent a season ending ankle surgery.
Sullivan was drafted by the Vikings out of Notre Dame in the sixth round of the 2008 NFL Draft. He played one year behind Matt Birk before assuming starting duties and has been a productive Vikings on the field and a model citizen off of it.