The Minnesota Vikings shocked a lot of NFL analysts this season with their aggressive offseason that saw them trading their 2017 first round draft choice to the Philadelphia Eagles for quarterback Sam Bradford after the devastating injury to Teddy Bridgewater. However, the trade for Bradford has only masked the bigger issue that they have in their line-up – the offensive line. The Vikings are reeling from the season-ending injuries to starting tackles Matt Kalil and Andre Smith, and unless Minnesota can fix their woes on the offensive line, even with the strength of their defense, it’s hard to see them make noise in the postseason.
Meanwhile, the San Francisco 49ers have been rumored to be open to trading offensive tackle Joe Staley, the former five-time Pro Bowler. Staley, who was drafted in the same round (first) of the same draft (2007) as pro bowler Joe Thomas, has been tied to the Vikings, as well as other teams, because of the depth of talent on the roster.
If the Vikings were to make an offer to the 49ers, it would have to be around the same that teams would offer for an upper tier talent on the offensive line, which in this day and age would be a second or third round pick. Staley would address both a short and long-term need at left tackle. With Kalil’s contract expiring after next season, and Staley signed through 2019, a trade here makes sense. There is also the possibility that the Vikings re-sign Kalil, and move Staley to right tackle, and close the loop on two potentials issues.
The potential roadblock to a deal of this magnitude is the Vikings are right against the cap, with only $50,000 to spare, so there would need to be some “creative accounting” to be made for such a deal to take place.