The Minnesota Vikings are anticipated to release their first-round pick, following a disappointing tenure that resulted in a $13 million setback

Vikings coach Kevin OConnell during the teams 2023 season opener

During the previous offseason, the Minnesota Vikings took a gamble on Marcus Davenport’s fitness by signing the former first-round pick from the New Orleans Saints to their most substantial single-year contract, valued at $13 million.

Vikings coach Kevin OConnell during the teams 2023 season opener
Minnesota Vikings coach Kevin OConnell during the teams 2023 season opener

The decision quickly appeared regrettable as Davenport suffered a pair of ankle injuries, limiting him to just two complete games throughout the season. However, further scrutiny of his contract details now highlights the extent of the Vikings’ misstep.

On The Star Tribune’s “Access Vikings” podcast, reporters Andrew Krammer and Ben Goessling disclosed a significant aspect of Davenport’s contract. Despite being on injured reserve, the 28-year-old edge rusher managed to pocket the $2 million worth of per-game roster bonuses stipulated in his agreement.

The sole circumstance that would have prevented Davenport from receiving those roster bonuses was if he sustained an injury to his shoulder, which had undergone two operations in 2022, as per Krammer’s information.

“Despite being well-aware of his injury history,” Krammer remarked, “the Vikings made a conscious decision to proceed with offering him that contract.”

The overall perception of the signing appears unfavorable, especially considering Davenport’s limited participation, totaling just 118 snaps throughout this season. Both Goessling and Krammer expressed skepticism about the likelihood of Davenport being retained by the team in the upcoming offseason.

“Even while on injured reserve, he continues to receive the same compensation,” Goessling noted. “I would be surprised if this association extends beyond the current year.”

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