Minnesota Vikings Wide Receiver Thielen a Candidate for Cut or Restructure

The Minnesota Vikings may be forced to make some difficult decisions this offseason. Speaking on the Pat McAfee show, wide receiver Adam Thielen admitted his current 2023 cap hit of $19.96 million is untenable and will likely demand an adjustment. Thielen's $11.8 million 2023 salary becomes guaranteed in mid-March, so that will likely function as a soft deadline for either a restructure or a cut. It's a number that is no longer commensurate with his ability: he nabbed 70 receptions for 716 yards at a middling 6.7 yards per target in 2022, and he hasn't cleared 1000 yards receiving in his past four seasons. Thielen signed his previous extension at the exact right time, immediately following a career year in 2018 in which he tallied 1373 receiving yards.

Thielen has never played a down for a team other than the Vikings, so he has a lot of good feelings and memories working in his favor. He'll be 33 years old before the beginning of the next season; it's unlikely he has a significant offer waiting for him in free agency. A team-friendly extension or restructure makes sense for all parties and could ensure he retires with the team. Moving on entirely is also on the table for the Vikings if they're willing to make a tough call.

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