With the 2023 NFL Draft now over, questions remain about the future of two of Minnesota Vikings key players.
Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer reported that the Vikings “will listen” to trade offers for running back Dalvin Cook and linebacker Za’Darius Smith.
• The Vikings will listen on Dalvin Cook and Za'Darius Smith. The problem is both will require contract adjustments to be traded. Revised deals have to sit a day before they're traded. So it'd be '24 picks for them.
• The Titans had a really cool process in vetting Levis …
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) April 29, 2023
It’s not surprising to hear that the Minnesota Vikings are still willing to listen to trade offers for Cook and Smith. Both players have been the subject of trade rumors and speculation for some time now, and the team has made it clear that they are willing to make moves if the right offer comes along.
One of the main factors that could impact a potential trade is the players’ contract situations. According to Breer, both Cook and Smith may need to have their contracts adjusted in order to facilitate a trade. This could be a sticking point for any team looking to acquire either player, as they would need to work out a new deal that works for both sides.
The situation with Smith has been particularly interesting in recent months. In March, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that Smith had asked the Vikings to release him. While the Vikings could save a significant amount of money by releasing Smith, they also know that he has value on the trade market.
Smith was a second-team All-Pro last season, recording 10 sacks in 16 starts. He will turn 31 in September, but he still has plenty of good football left in him. It remains to be seen whether the Vikings will ultimately decide to release him or try to trade him, but either way, it’s clear that Smith’s future in Minnesota is uncertain.
Cook’s situation is also worth keeping an eye on. In March, it was reported that the Miami Dolphins were “monitoring” Cook’s potential availability. The Dolphins are known for being aggressive in the trade market, and they could certainly use a player of Cook’s caliber in their backfield.
Cook is signed through 2025 and is due to make $10.4 million in 2023. He had a down year in 2022, recording his lowest yards per carry of his six-year career. However, he is still one of the most talented running backs in the league and would be a valuable addition to any team in need of a dynamic playmaker.
If the Vikings do decide to trade Cook or Smith, it would be a bold move that could have a significant impact on the team’s future. Both players are key contributors and fan favorites, and it would take a substantial offer to convince the Vikings to part ways with either of them.
For now, it seems that the Vikings are content to listen to trade offers and weigh their options. But as the offseason progresses and training camp approaches, it will be interesting to see if any teams make a serious push for Cook or Smith, and whether the Vikings ultimately decide to pull the trigger on a trade.