Posted by Will Brinson
On Tuesday afternoon, Vikings tackle Bryant McKinnie ominously tweeted, "Its been fun." The logical speculation was that he'd been cut (or informed he'd be cut anyway) by Minnesota.
That's exactly what's happened, as the team announced Tuesday that they'd cut McKinnie.
"This decision, while not an easy one, is in the best interests of our football team as we move forward," head coach Leslie Frazier said. "We appreciate Bryant’s contributions to the Vikings, and we wish him the best in the future."
McKinnie was placed on the non-football injury (NFI) list earlier in the week and was, as Judd Zulgad of the Minnesota Star-Tribune points out, due to receive $4.9 million base salary this season, along with a $500,000 and $250,000 workout bonus.
The tackle was also apparently in pretty bad physical condition when he arrived at camp, though the team wouldn't confirm that's why he was on the NFI list. They did confirm they'd speak with McKinnie on Tuesday about the shape he was in, along with, per Zulgad, "a number of things."
"There are a number of things that we want to work on with Bryant and some other guys as well," Frazier said. "Conditioning is part of it. We just want to try to make sure that we're doing the right thing by every guy that's wearing the purple."
Conditioning will be the likely suspect for the final reason McKinnie was cut and you can expect plenty of speculation as to where the 2009 Pro Bowler will end up next, beginning with the division rival Chicago Bears who are always in need of offensive linemen, though it's hard to imagine he fits the bill (or, doesn't fit, I suppose) if he's a) not in shape and b) unwilling to take less money.
Speaking of Chicago, Sun-Times writer Sean Jensen reports that McKinnie wouldn't take a pay cut from the aforementioned base salary and that also led to the Vikings decision to cut him.
The lesson to be learned here? Showing up to work out of shape and refusing to take a pay cut is no way to go through life, son.
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