The Arizona Cardinals are sending center Mason Cole to the Vikings in exchange for a 6th round round pick according to former Jets QB, turned NFL insider Mark Sanchez.
Cole had played on nearly 81% of the Cardinals offensive snaps last year but was going to most likely be pinned to the bench behind center Rodney Hudson who Arizona traded for last week. Arizona was tight on cap room and Cole was always going to be a potential cut with a $2.183 million salary, so to get something in return is a good job by the Cardinals. Arizona now has approximately $5.5 million in cap space and about $2.7 million in effective cap room once the draft is complete.
Minnesota is always looking for offensive line help and had 11 picks in this years draft so using one of those picks on Cole likely made some sense for the Vikings. I would guess that they will see if Cole can win a starting job at guard and if not likely be their primary interior offensive line backup. The Vikings still have around $8.5 million after the trade and made a curious decision to June 1 Kyle Rudolph which will open up millions after the draft. Perhaps this is a signal that Minnesota may be shopping their later round draft picks for players like Cole who are near the end of a rookie contract and potentially out of the plans for their current team.
Jason is the founder of OTC and has been studying NFL contracts and the salary cap for over 15 years. Jason has co-authored two books about the NFL, Crunching Numbers and the Drafting Stage, which are widely circulated in the industry and hosts the OTC Podcast. Jason’s work has been featured in various publications including the Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, NFL Network and more. OTC is widely considered the leading authority on contract matters in the NFL.