Brian O’Neill Signs Huge 5-Year Extension with Vikings

AP Photo

The Minnesota Vikings and Brian O’Neill have agreed to a contract extension that could keep the stud right tackle in purple and gold for five more seasons. This was a deal that’s been expected for months. Having it signed before week one means the negotiations won’t push into the regular season.

O’Neill’s extension will reportedly pay him $92.5 million (49M guaranteed) over those 5 seasons, according to ESPN, an average of $18.5 million annually. The contract puts him right at the top of the NFL $$$ list at right tackle. Only the Saints’ Ryan Ramczyk makes more per year ($19.2M), according to Spotrac.com.

O’Neill has started 42 games since being drafted by the Vikings and they’ve all been played at right tackle. Some wonder when or if he will move to the left side, especially with the many questions that surround that side of the Minnesota line. From all reports, however, the Vikings plan on keeping him at right tackle for the foreseeable future.

O’Neill Speaks with Media After Extension

Minutes after Brian O’Neill signed his extension, he was ushered onto the TCO Performance Center press conference stage to speak to media. He looked like a kid who just booked his first trip with an all-access pass to Disney World.

In his presser O’Neill said, “this is the most excited I’ve been about an offensive line [while in Minnesota]”, which is interesting. Previous o-lines during Brian’s tenure don’t make for a high bar to surpass but I still have my doubts to the truth behind his statement. Maybe he forgot that Riley Reiff will be on the other sideline in Cincinnati this week?

Rick Spielman and the Vikings front office needed to get this deal done. It’s just one step in the right direction toward o-line competence. Let’s see what the rest of it looks like on Sunday.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan