Vikings Have Inquired About Trade for $20 Million Champion CB: Report

L'Jarius Sneed, Chiefs

Getty Cornerback L'Jarius Sneed of the Kansas City Chiefs.

The Minnesota Vikings are among a handful of NFL teams that have reached out to the Kansas City Chiefs about trading for cornerback L’Jarius Sneed.

Tyler Dragon of USA Today broke the news on Tuesday, March 5.

“A person with direct knowledge of the situation told USA Today Sports that the Minnesota Vikings, Indianapolis Colts, Tennessee Titans, New England Patriots, Detroit Lions, Atlanta Falcons and Jacksonville Jaguars have expressed interest in the Chiefs corner,” Dragon reported.

Chiefs Used Franchise Tag on L’Jarius Sneed, Will Still Allow Him to Seek Trade

L'Jarius Sneed

GettyKansas City Chiefs cornerback L’Jarius Sneed.

Dragon’s report came on the same day that the Chiefs officially applied the franchise tag to Sneed, which will pay the cornerback just shy of $20 million for the 2024 season. However, Kansas City has given the 27-year-old defender the option to seek a trade somewhere willing to sign him to a multiyear contract this summer.

“Both sides have until mid-July to finalize a long-term extension or until the NFL’s trade deadline to part ways via trade,” Dragon wrote. “Sneed is one of the best zone cover corners in the NFL. According to Next Gen Stats, Sneed allowed no touchdowns and a league-low four yards per target while in zone coverage in 2023.”

A fourth-round pick out of Louisiana Tech in 2020, Sneed has tallied 40 pass breakups, 19 tackles for loss, 10 interceptions and 4 forced fumbles over four years in the league, per Pro Football Reference.

Sneed has been an integral member of the Chiefs defense across three trips to the Super Bowl, including back-to-back championship runs in 2022 and 2023.

Chiefs Looking for 2nd-Round Pick in Trade for L’Jarius Sneed

L'Jarius Sneed

GettyKansas City Chiefs cornerback L’Jarius Sneed.

The Chiefs aren’t looking for a monster return for Sneed, according to Ari Meirov of 33rd Team.

“L’Jarius Sneed would likely cost a Day 2 pick if the Chiefs can’t extend him,” 33rd Team posted to X earlier this week. “The belief is that a second-round pick would get it done.”

Minnesota holds the rights to the No. 42 overall pick, which should be high enough to function as the sole piece of a deal. The Vikings also had north of $37 million in 2024 salary cap space as of Tuesday with which to iron out a deal for Sneed.

The cornerback would fit perfectly in the unique defensive scheme implemented by coordinator Brian Flores in Minnesota last season, which Kevin Seifert of ESPN outlined in a December 1 article.

In his first season with the Vikings, Flores has achieved a rare feat: concocting a new NFL scheme with almost no one noticing. Flores revealed in a recent ESPN interview that he incorporated a version of the defense popularized at the college level by Pittsburgh coach Pat Narduzzi, one that combines a six-man front with versions of zone coverage behind it.

The Vikings lead the NFL in frequency of zone coverage (69 percent), according to ESPN Stats & Information. They have also used their six-man front in ways rarely seen at the NFL level. Flores’ defense has the league’s highest rates — by a wide margin — in two philosophical opposites: blitzes and three-man rushes. They have more than twice as many six-man rushes as the next-most aggressive team.

Read More