Why the Vikings won't regret not trading for ex-Chiefs CB L'Jarius Sneed

Tennessee Titans CB L'Jarius Sneed
Tennessee Titans CB L'Jarius Sneed / David Eulitt/GettyImages

Earlier this offseason, there were some rumors floating around the Minnesota Vikings were interested in potentially making a trade with the Kansas City Chiefs for veteran cornerback L'Jarius Sneed. Well, any possibility of the Vikings ending up with Sneed this year came to a close this past Friday when the Chiefs dealt him to the Tennessee Titans.

The Titans (who have been making a ton of underrated moves this offseason) were able to acquire Sneed and a 2024 seventh-round draft pick from Kansas City in exchange for a 2024 seventh-round selection and a third-round pick in the 2025 NFL Draft.

When one sees that it didn't take a whole lot for Tennessee to trade for the veteran defensive back, some might wonder why Minnesota didn't make a bigger effort to make a deal for him. But after it was revealed that the Titans also gave Sneed a lucrative contract extension, it was much easier to understand why he didn't end up with the Vikings.

Extension price likely caused Minnesota Vikings to lose interest in potential trade for former Kansas City Chiefs CB L'Jarius Sneed

Shortly after the trade between Tennessee and Kansas City was announced, Bleacher Report's Jordan Schultz also revealed that the Titans and Sneed reportedly agreed to a four-year contract extension worth $76 million. The cornerback's new deal with Tennessee includes $55 million in guaranteed money as well.

According to Over The Cap, Minnesota currently has a little more than $17.5 million in cap space. Clearly, that's not enough to comfortably afford the contract that Sneed eventually got from the Titans.

If they truly wanted to, the Vikings could have figured out a way to afford an extension for Sneed. But after spending a significant amount of cap space on notable defensive free agents like Jonathan Greenard, Andrew Van Ginkel, and Blake Cashman, Minnesota felt it was better off looking elsewhere for cornerback help this offseason.

With his new contract, Sneed's average annual salary is now tied for the sixth-highest among NFL cornerbacks heading into the 2024 season. That seems pretty high for a guy who hasn't earned a single selection to the Pro Bowl in his four years in the league and whose PFF defensive grade hasn't ranked higher than 13th among corners around the NFL since he entered the league in 2020.

Last year, Sneed also led all cornerbacks in the league in penalties after he drew a total of 11 flags (not one for removing his helmet against the Vikings, though...).

Did he play an important role in helping the Chiefs win the Super Bowl in each of the last two seasons? Sure, but is he worth the type of money that he's now getting from Tennessee? Probably not, and knowing this, Minnesota general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah should be able to sleep just fine at night.

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