"Around the League" is taking a look at each team's salary-cap situation heading into training camp. We continue with the Minnesota Vikings.
Adjusted cap number: $122.735 million
Cap room remaining: $10.52 million
Best bargain: Through his first three seasons in the NFL, Percy Harvin has 218 catches for 2,625 yards and 17 touchdowns. He notched a career-high 87 receptions for 967 yards despite playing in fewer than 60 percent of the Vikings' offensive snaps in 2011. Harvin is not happy with his limited role in the offense. He briefly demanded to be traded and hinted at dissatisfaction with his contract, but will reportedly show on time for training camp. Harvin should have a larger role in the offense this season, and with a $915,000 base salary and $2.043 million cap number, his production could make him one of the bigger bargains in the league.
Potential camp casualty: Normally, a 35-year-old cornerback coming off a season during which he missed 11 games with injury -- after missing significant portions of previous seasons with injuries -- wouldn't be long for a spot with a rebuilding team. But a lack of reliable options on the outside -- Chris Cook has battled injuries and off-the-field issues the last two seasons, Chris Carr started just one game for the 2011 Baltimore Ravens and Asher Allen abruptly retired -- means Antoine Winfield should be back and starting on the perimeter this season. It also helps that his base salary this season was reduced from $7 million to $3 million, likely ensuring his return.
Veteran wide receiver Michael Jenkins is coming off a knee injury and might not be a fit in the Vikings' long-term plans. With Percy Harvin, Jerome Simpson and a pair of fourth-round draft picks (Greg Childs, Jarius Wright) locks to make the team, Jenkins and his $2.5 million base salary could be deemed expendable.
Contract issue looming in 2013: Though he's not scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent until 2014, Harvin is expected to ramp up his pursuit of a new contract next offseason. Around the League has already pointed out that Harvin's current base salary of $1.55 million in 2013 could increase to as much as $3,343,750 by the time the new league year begins, (though that sum would, a source with knowledge of his contract points out, decrease by $72,500 if Harvin skips the offseason workouts). The Vikings have some leverage over Harvin, as the club could control him through the 2014 season, thanks to the franchise tag. The tag for a receiver is projected to be worth $10.062 million that season (provided the salary cap remains flat).