Minnesota Vikings Surprisingly Release Alexander Mattison

Alexander Mattison
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Last offseason, the Minnesota Vikings gambled by releasing Dalvin Cook. The hope was that a running back committee led by Alexander Mattison would be better than what the 28-year-old former Pro Bowler could offer.

Being that Cook averaged just 3.2 yards per carry while finishing with 214 rushing yards, the Vikings weren’t necessarily wrong to move on from their former starter. Yet, Mattison didn’t exactly hit the ground running either.

Now, after averaging just 3.9 YPC and finishing with 700 rushing yards and zero touchdowns (rushing), Mattison’s time with the Vikings has come to an end.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Vikings are releasing Mattison.

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The move comes as a surprise for a number of reasons. One, there isn’t anyone who stole the starting job, though consideration could be given to Ty Chandler.

Yet, the more fascinating aspect of this transaction is that Mattison was believed to have $2.75 million already fully guaranteed for the 2024 season. Yet, as Darren Wolfson found out, this near $3M amount would have become fully guaranteed on March 15. By releasing Mattison now, this transaction saves the Vikings $3.35 million in cap space.

However, it’s become clear that the Vikings feel they can either get better production elsewhere or use Mattison’s roster spot on a player they feel is better equipped to get more wins in 2024. With a deep class of free agent running backs, including Derrick Henry, Saquon Barkley, and Josh Jacobs, plus a similarly fascinating draft class, the Vikings will have to look elsewhere to improve the RB position this offseason.

Mainstays include Chandler, Kene Nwangwu, DeWayne McBride, and pending free agent Cam Akers, who may seek a chance to return to Minnesota after yet another season-ending injury.

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