There’s a reason the Vikings moved as quickly as they did to lock up rising star Everson Griffen.
According to Alex Marvez, the Denver Broncos forced the Vikings’ hand by dangling an offer worth $9 million-per-year.
Not wanting to lose Griffen, the Vikings were forced to raise their own offer, pushing Griffen’s numbers up to five-years, $42.5 million with $19.8 million in guarantees.
On the surface it may seem that the Broncos’ pursuit of Griffen caused the Vikings to overpay, but when you break down the contract you find a different story.
The terms of the deal show that Griffen received only a $6 million signing bonus, and that most of his guaranteed money will be paid out in the first two years of the deal as base salary, leaving the Vikings with relatively little load in terms of dead money as the contract wears on.
In other words, though the Vikings are paying Griffen quite a bit in terms of base salary and bonuses the first two years, their risk diminishes greatly after year two.
So a contract that may look too big on the surface actually is not a huge gamble.
Either way, Griffen got paid starter money, and he gets to stay in an organization that considers him core talent. And the Broncos are left sifting through the free agent scrap heap in search of a pass rusher.
Griffen and the Vikings are the winners here, and Denver are the losers.