Dalvin Cook’s Instagram Quote Is Telling

Flashback Friday: Vikings Blow Out Dolphins in 2018
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports.

Perhaps the longest-running saga of the Minnesota Vikings offseason, Dalvin Cook could be traded or released in about 11 days.

That’s when the financial parting of ways because more advantageous to the Vikings — on June 1st.

Dalvin Cook’s Instagram Quote Is Telling

If the Vikings release Cook before June 1st, the club would save $5.9 million with an $8.2 million cap penalty. After that date, it’s $9 million in savings with a $5.1 million cap penalty. For a trade, sending Cook elsewhere before June 1st would save $7.8 million and fetch a mid-to-late round draft pick. Offloading Cook after June 1st via trade would save $11 million with a $3.1 million penalty.

Instagram Quote Is
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports.

So, trading or releasing the soon-to-be 28-year-old has been the all the rage since early March. Why? Well, the Vikings are on the hook for the chunky $14.1 million cap hit with Cook, and Minnesota employs a general manager who may not enjoy footing the bill. Numbers-based executives — like Kwesi Adofo-Mensah — tend to believe paying running backs fat contracts is silly, so Cook has been the subject of departure rumors for over two months.

And on Thursday, Cook posted a quote to his Instagram that seems to hint at his current situation with the Vikings. Otherwise, it’s just a coincidental post that happens to bump up against his future. He wrote on Instagram, “Your value doesn’t decrease based on someone’s inability to see your worth.”

The Vikings 2022 Offense by the Numbers: After Week 6
Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports.

In March, the Vikings re-signed Alexader Mattison, the since-2019 RB2, for two years and $7 million. That was the beginning of serious “Will Cook leave?” speculation, and it hasn’t stopped. The club drafted DeWayne McBride last month from the University of Alabama-Birmingham, an ultra-productive workhorse RB who averaged 7.3 yards per carry in college. And Mattison + McBride are in addition to second-year RB Ty Chandler and third-year speedster Kene Nwangwu on the Vikings roster. Too many non-Cooks in the kitchen.

Is There a Dalvin
Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports.

Instagram or Twitter posts and clues are never gospel for future outcomes, but Cook’s post seems directly applicable to his current standstill with Vikings management. We shall see if he’s ultimately traded or released.

A week ago, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler said on SportsCenter, “Dalvin Cook’s future has been sort of open-ended recently. I was told from a source that the Vikings want to do right by Dalvin Cook. Right now, they’re willing to hold on to his cap hit of around $14 million until they figure this all out.”

Indeed, it feels like a ‘Vikings thing’ to do, ensuring Cook is satisfied with his exit. The franchise treated Eric Kendricks and Adam Thielen with the utmost respect when cutting ties in March.

Cook scored 3 touchdowns over 50+ yards in 2022.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.