Minnesota Vikings: The path to landing Trent Williams

Veteran tackle Trent Williams is likely on his way out of Washington. With the Minnesota Vikings reportedly interested, here’s how they could land Williams.

The Minnesota Vikings appear to have their sights set on trying to add a Pro Bowl veteran tackle to the offense during the 2020 NFL season. As the offseason continues to roll along leading up to start of the new year, there might be a dominant offensive lineman that could soon hit the open market for teams or at the very least is available via trade.

Last week, the NFL learned that veteran and Pro Bowl tackle Trent Williams and the Washington Redskins will likely part ways in 2020. The organization gave Williams and his agent the go-ahead to seek out trade partners, with many teams likely interested in bringing in Williams. One team that is reportedly on that list is Minnesota.

According to ESPN reporter John Keim, the Vikings are interested in bringing in Williams to add him to the mix of the offensive line — a unit that has been viewed as below average in Minnesota for the last few years — while reuniting him with former teammate and current Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins in purple and gold.

According to Keim, Minnesota has “shown interest in adding Williams,” stating this move would no question improve and bolster the Vikings offensive line in 2020. If Minnesota is indeed serious about acquiring Williams, what would the path to getting in purple and gold look like this offseason? Let’s take a look at some possibilities.

The first option here for the Vikings is obviously to make a deal to trade for the 31-year-old tackle, freeing him from Washington and what has become a difficult relationship between the player and organization.

Minnesota, however, holds $13.1 million in cap space at the current moment this offseason. That Is an issue due to the fact that Williams has a $14.5 million cap hit for the 2020 campaign.

If the two teams were serious about making a deal, that would mean the Vikings would have to free up some space for Williams, with one likely move being trading away Minnesota safety Anthony Harris, who was franchise tagged by the Vikings at the start of free agency.

If Minnesota traded away Harris — to either Washington or somewhere else — that would add nearly $11.5 million in cap space, clearing room to bring in Williams.

The second option for Minnesota to potentially acquire the veteran tackle is by signing him outright, given that he is first cut by Washington after exhausting trade possibilities first. That would be the most ideal situation for the Vikings if it ended up coming to that point.

There is no question that Williams would help the Vikings in improving the protection of Cousins under center. The veteran tackle, who missed the 2019 campaign after he had surgery to remove a growth on his head, has appeared in seven Pro Bowls throughout his nine-year career.

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Minnesota seems to be serious about adding to and improving its offensive line this offseason, and one way to do that is by bringing in Williams either via trade or eventually through free agency.

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