Vikings trading for Jags DE Yannick Ngakoue? Not so fast.
If there’s one constant that the Minnesota Vikings have had under general manager Rick Spielman, it’s to stay the course in terms if team building. A large part of that is to never put too many eggs in one basket, whether it be via trade or at least outside of quarterback Kirk Cousins’ 2022 cap hit, massive contracts.
The recent impasse in contract negotiations for star running back Dalvin Cook is further proof of this, even with Cousins’ deal (this is a QB’s league after all).
With the team coming off of the largest seven-round draft haul in league history, now doesn’t really feel like the time for the Vikings to go all in for one position as they’re essentially a season or two from making another run (despite what all those in the national media or betting world will tell you).
That’s why those attempting to link disgruntled Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Yannick Ngakoue are being unrealistic, or rather, one of the reasons.
According to NFL sources, Jacksonville is extremely close to trading Yannick Ngakoue today or tomorrow, have a firm offer in place–(hearing a two). looks like this holdout will be over soon and Jacksonville will get more picks for their tanking….
— Michael Lombardi (@mlombardiNFL) August 19, 2020
Ngakoue is good, and the team is in desperate need of help on the defensive line with Everson Griffen now in Dallas and nose tackle Michael Pierce opting out of the 2020 season, AND replacement temporary trade piece PJ Hall failing his physical.
That having been said, this pick makes no sense for the Vikings financially or in terms of what it’d take to land Ngakoue. If there is one other constant under Spielman, it’s his love of amassing draft picks, namely first-and-seventh-round picks.
Last off-season fellow disgruntled Jag Jalen Ramsey was traded to the Rams for two first-rounders and a fourth-rounder. While Ngakoue wouldn’t have that steep an asking price, it’d be high enough on its own to keep Spielman out of the game.
Add in his over $17 million dollar franchise tag, and the fact that any team that lands him wouldn’t be able to extend him (as the deadline passed) until next off-season, and you could be trading the future and breaking the bank for a rental player.
None of those things sound very Vikings-y to me.
But there is need here, but the Vikings have typically developed their edge rushers from within (and looked for interior help in free agency). With the team moving Ohio State product Jalyn Holmes to the edge and also drafting the highly coveted, by the Vikings, DJ Wonnum in the fourth-round of this year’s draft, I’d be surprised if they also went after Ngakoue.
Again, he’s a great player who could do great things in Minnesota opposite Danielle Hunter. But if the price(s) is too high, and there’s no guarantee that he’d be on the team past 2020, not to mention the uncertainty with the 2021 (and beyond) salary cap… Yeah, I just don’t see the Vikings going all in this soon into a defensive rebuild.
Perhaps if Spielman and head coach Mike Zimmer were going into 2020 sans contract extensions, but they’ve been given the confidence of the Wilf Family and thus are in no rush to spend the little cap space they fought so hard to accrue on one player.
Lastly, it’d seem odd to pay an outsider like Ngakoue when the team just reached an impasse with $1.3 million dollar man Dalvin Cook.
As much as I love me some draft rumors, this seems to be much ado about nothing.