The deadline passed Tuesday afternoon and for the eighth straight offseason the Vikings did not use the franchise or transition tags to retain a departing free agent.
The futures of linebacker Anthony Barr and defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson in Minnesota will be tied to whether General Manager Rick Spielman and the players’ representatives can agree on lucrative contract extension. Other teams can legally negotiate with Barr and Richardson starting Monday and sign them March 13.
Vikings brass has long sought to re-sign Barr but have not yet reached an agreement. Barr’s market value could exceed their spending power in the coming days.
The Vikings are also interested in retaining other free agents such as safety Anthony Harris, RB Latavius Murray, guard Nick Easton and returner Marcus Sherels, but face a tight salary cap situation. QB Trevor Siemianis also unsigned.
Six NFL teams used the franchise tag — five to keep front-seven defenders, including Dallas’ DeMarcus Lawrence, Houston’s Jadeveon Clowney, Seattle’s Frank Clark, Kansas City’s Dee Ford and Atlanta’s Grady Jarret. The 49ers tagged kicker Robbie Gould.
The Patriots did not apply the tag to kicker Stephen Gostkowski, meaning he can become a free agent next week.