Vikings cap space\r\nAccording to the Public Salary Cap Report on the NFLPA's website, the Vikings currently have $19,979,600 in salary cap space, with 60 players under contract.\u00a0The team carried over $13,729,203 in cap space from last season. Keep in mind, only the highest-paid 51 players count against the salary cap during the offseason.\r\nQuarterback\u00a0implications\r\nThe Vikings signed\u00a0Kirk\u00a0Cousins to a fully guaranteed 3-year, $84 million contract. He will have cap hits of $24 million, $29 million, and $31 million the next three seasons. Minnesota also traded for backup quarterback\u00a0Trevor Siemian. The 7th-round draft pick out of Northwestern will make $1.9 million in 2018, the last year of his rookie deal.\r\n\r\nMore on these two later.\r\nFree agency\r\nEven though the Vikings splurged in free agency and spent $92 million between Cousins and Richardson, the team saved a ton of money by\u00a0spending minimally on in-house free agents. Very few free agents were brought back, and those that were signed did so on incredibly team-friendly deals.\r\nAdditions\r\nMinnesota re-signed the following players:\r\n\r\n \tG Nick Easton (RFA) offered second-round tender by Vikings ($2.9 million)\r\n \tK\u00a0Kai Forbath re-signed for $790K\r\n \tS Anthony Harris (ERFA) re-signed for $705K\r\n \tRB Mack Brown (ERFA) re-signed for $630K\r\n \tDT Dylan Bradley\u00a0re-signed (terms TBD)\r\n \tCB\/PR\u00a0Marcus Sherels\u00a0re-signed (terms TBD)\r\n\r\nAll of these players will make less than $3 million annually. On the contrary, let's take a look at the players that left Minnesota. Nearly all of the players that departed in free agency will make more money with their new teams, and quite a few of them will make substantially more.\r\nDepartures\r\n\r\n \tQB Case Keenum made $2 million in 2017, this year he'll make $18 million (DEN)\r\n \tRB Jerick McKinnon made $828K in 2017, this year he'll make $10.5 million (SF)\r\n \tQB Teddy Bridgewater made $2.1 million in 2017, this year he'll make $6 million (NYJ)\r\n \tCB\u00a0Tramaine Brock made $695K in 2017, this year he'll make $3 million (SF)\r\n \tQB Sam Bradford made $18 million in 2017, this year he'll make $20 million (ARI)\r\n \tOL Jeremiah Sirles (RFA) made $690K in 2017, this year he'll make $790K (CAR)\r\n \tWR\u00a0Jarius Wright made $2.1 million in 2017, this year he'll make $2.5 million (CAR)\r\n \tDT\u00a0Tom Johnson made $2.3 million in 2017,\u00a0this year he'll make $2.1 million (SEA)\r\n \tLB\u00a0Emmanuel Lamur\u00a0made $2.75 million in 2017, this year he'll make $790K (OAK)\r\n \tDT\u00a0Shamar Stephen made $1.8 million in 2017, this year he'll make $2.1 million (SEA)\r\n\r\nAltogether, these players accounted for roughly $33 million in cap space for the Vikings in 2017. In 2018, the same players will account for at least $65 million on their new teams, a difference of around $32 million. Remember, Cousins and Richardson will account for $34 million in 2018.\r\n\r\nThe Vikings also saved money by asking\u00a0RB\u00a0Latavius Murray\u00a0to restructure his contract (saved $1.2 million) and cutting WR\u00a0Jarius Wright\u00a0(saved $2.6 million). Furthermore, DT\u00a0Sharrif Floyd (injury settlement)\u00a0is\u00a0now off the books.\r\n\r\nAs stated above, Minnesota has roughly $20 million in salary cap space. The reason the Vikings are currently carrying that much money likely comes down to extending the contracts of multiple players that will become free agents in 2019.\r\n2019 free agents\r\nSalary cap analyst Jason Fitzgerald of OverTheCap.com\u00a0recently told Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press the projected dollar amounts the Vikings will likely need to pay their upcoming free agents:\r\n\r\n \tDE Danielle Hunter ($14M\/year)\r\n \tLB Anthony Barr (~$12M)\r\n \tWR Stefon Diggs ($11M)\r\n \tLB Eric Kendricks ($8M)\r\n\r\nFor reference, here's how much each player extended before last season received:\r\n\r\n \tDE\u00a0Everson Griffen\u00a0($14.5 million annually)\r\n \tCB\u00a0Xavier Rhodes ($14 million annually)\r\n \tDT\u00a0Linval Joseph\u00a0($10 million annually)\r\n\r\nTrae Waynes team option\r\nThe Vikings are expected to pick up the 5th-year option of cornerback\u00a0Trae Waynes\u00a0before the May 3rd deadline. Minnesota will pay Waynes\u00a0roughly $13 million\u00a0during his option year (2019). Due to the high salary, it's possible the team will try to reach an extension with the former first-rounder after the season to lower his cap hit.\r\nBorman breakdown\r\nWe're not even to the NFL Draft, and yet, the Vikings' front office staff deserves credit for another impressive offseason.\u00a0Keeping the team competitive and out of cap trouble for the foreseeable future is every general manager's goal.\r\n\r\nNot only was landing Cousins a monumental signing, but back-loading his contract made it possible for the team to absorb his large salary while also having enough cap room to hand out extensions to future free agents.\r\n\r\nFurthermore, Minnesota went and signed one of the best 3-techniques in football in\u00a0Sheldon Richardson. He's an upgrade for the No. 1 defense in the NFL. Also, the team traded for\u00a026 year-old quarterback\u00a0Trevor Siemian,\u00a0who has more potential but will make less money than\u00a0Case Keenum did as a Viking.\r\n\r\nNow, there is still work to be done. The Vikings will need to find out a way to extend the contracts of key starters while staying under the salary cap. By conserving roughly $20 million in cap room, the team should be able to heavily front-load at least one of the extensions for Barr, Hunter, Kendricks, or Diggs before the season. That'll provide enough cap relief next season for the team to work out deals with the others. It'll take some contract structure manipulation, but it can be done.\r\n\r\nSaid Fitzgerald, \u201cI think (the Vikings are) still healthy with their cap. They can make the numbers work...If they get those extensions done, it\u2019s very likely they would run close to the cap this year, but there\u2019s nothing wrong with that."\r\n\r\nOne major affect stemming from all these large contracts will be the inability to sign depth players. That may hurt the Vikings down the stretch if injuries arise. But with the unpredictable nature of injuries, a recent history of draft success and a coaching staff known to be able to develop young talent, it's a risk the franchise appears willing to take.\r\nAt this rate, the Minnesota Vikings are on the verge of having a Super Bowl caliber roster and actually keeping it together for years under the salary cap \u2014 that's simply amazing.