Eric Kendricks – LB
- 2022 cap hit: $13,530,000
- 2022 dead cap: $5,960,000
- Potential savings: $7.57M
Eric Kendricks is one of the most dynamic linebackers in the NFL. His ability to rush the passer, drop into coverage, or be in run support makes him a valuable piece of the Vikings’ defense and an anchor since 2015.
The Vikings defender has struggled a bit this year but is typically among the best interior linebackers in the game. Seeing as to how Anthony Barr likely won’t be with the team in 2022, letting Kendricks go would force Minnesota to seek multiple players in that group in the draft or free agency.
Kendricks will be turning 30 in February. While that’s not old by a linebacker’s standards, if this team is starting to rebuild on defense and try to get younger, they may elect to move on from some of their bigger contracts.
Letting Kendricks walk probably wouldn’t be the wisest move for the Vikings, but the thought of saving over $7.5 million by letting one player go has to be at least somewhat appealing to a team that might have a new head coach in 2022.