The Minnesota Vikings needed to make some difficult decisions to relieve cap space this offseason, which left Linval Joseph on the outside.
The 31-year-old arrived in a big-money deal from the New York Giants in 2014 and became an instant fan-favorite. He was a hugely influential figure within the locker room and enjoyed a much-improved season in 2019.
Joseph is a brut force on the defensive line interior and freed up considerable space for star pass-rushers Danielle Hunter and Everson Griffen last season. He still has a number of years left in the NFL given his high level of production.
Minnesota had just $1 million in salary-cap space to work before Joseph’s release. Sacrifices needed to be made by the front office decision-makers that also saw Pro Bowl cornerback Xavier Rhodes shown the door.
The former second-round pick out of East Carolina’s departure was a necessary evil for the Vikings. This was a purely business decision given his recent performances and is a further sign of the cutthroat world of the NFL.
Joseph still has a lot to offer, but that will now be with another NFL team.