Vikings Acquire Pro Bowl DE Yannick Ngakoue From Jacksonville
The Minnesota Vikings made a big move over the weekend to bolster their defensive line by trading for Pro Bowl defensive end Yannick Ngakoue.
The Vikings have a young, unproven secondary and they've been without DE Danielle Hunter as of late. He has been held out of practices due to what the team is vaguely calling a "tweak". If you have an unproven secondary, a strong defensive line can help take the pressure off of that unit so having Hunter unavailable is concerning.
Acquiring Yannick Ngakoue is a move that will immediately upgrade the defensive line and, if Hunter comes back a full strength, gives the Vikings a top-tier pass rush and nice depth at the position.
Ngakoue is a Pro Bowl player who, at just 25 years-old, is in his prime. Jacksonville placed the franchise tag on him, but he refused to sign the franchise tender that would've paid him $17.8 million this season. For whatever reason, he wanted out of Jacksonville bad enough to take a pay cut.
The Vikings secured his services for a 2021 second-round draft pick and a conditional 2022 fifth-round draft pick that could go as high as a third-round pick. The third-round pick scenario would only come to fruition if the Vikings won the Super Bowl and Ngakoue made the Pro Bowl. If he made the Pro Bowl without a Vikings Super Bowl victory, the team would surrender a fourth-round pick.
It's being reported that he's agreed to a one-year deal with the Vikings worth $12 million, but Ngakoue and the team hope to eventually work out a long-term deal.
It's very rare to acquire a Pro Bowl defensive end in their prime, so this is obviously a terrific addition for the Vikings. The big question is whether they can indeed ink him to a long-term deal and still work out a new contract for running back Dalvin Cook, who is an integral part of the offense.