Vikings Are One Cut Away From Affording Jadeveon Clowney

Kirk Cousins, Jadeveon Clowney
Seattle Seahawks defensive end Jadeveon Clowney | Abbie Parr/Getty Images

The Minnesota Vikings had a solid draft in 2020, but they failed to find a replacement for Everson Griffen who can take some of the pressure off of superstar defensive lineman Danielle Hunter.

If the Vikings are willing to go big-game hunting, former Seattle Seahawks pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney could solve all of their problems given his years of Pro Bowl production, but Minnesota would need to make one more cut to afford him.

The player who needs to go is offensive tackle Riley Reiff, who is starting his fourth season as a Viking.

Excluding Kirk Cousins' insane contract, the highest cap hit on the team is that of the left tackle Reiff. If Minnesota wants Clowney, Reiff needs to go, as committing eight penalties and allowing five sacks isn't the kind of production the Vikings wanted to see out of a guy scheduled to account for a $13.2 million cap hit.

While Reiff's replacement, 2020 second-rounder Ezra Cleveland, will be in for a steep learning curve as a rookie, the Vikings clearly felt strongly enough about his pro potential to use a high pick on him, and the success of Brian O'Neill proves Minnesota has had success with raw, athletic tackles like him.

Clowney would take a solid Vikings defense to the next level, and all it would take to get him is cutting ties with a player that Minnesota has already signaled they are willing to move on from. What exactly is Rick Spielman waiting for?