Backup end Brian Robison signs 3-year, $14.1 million deal with Vikings
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The Minnesota Vikings' 11th-hour dealings weren't limited to issuing restricted tenders.
Backup end Brian Robison confirmed via Twitter on Thursday evening he has agreed to terms on a three-year contract that multiple reports indicated is worth $14 million, including a $6.5 million signing bonus. Shortly after, the Vikings announced the extension on their Web site but did not disclose terms.
Robison, 27, appeared in all 16 games last season, recording two sacks and 18 quarterback pressures in 319 snaps. The former fourth-round pick started five games as a rookie in 2007 but only two since at left end behind starter Ray Edwards -- who, like Robison and five other players, received a restricted tender offer from the Vikings on Wednesday.
The deal with Robison is interesting because the Vikings have been reluctant since last summer to sign any players to multiyear deals. However, they broached the subject with the agent for receiver Sidney Rice last week at the NFL scouting combine and apparently did the same with Robison and perhaps others.
Unless the next collective-bargaining agreement changes rules from the previous pact, unsigned players with five accrued seasons (such as Edwards) or four (such as Rice and Robison) would be eligible for unrestricted free agency.
The Vikings are not expected to re-sign Edwards if he becomes a free agent. Robison -- who had received a second-round restricted tender worth $1.91 million -- could be a candidate to take his place at left end. But coach Leslie Frazier has made clear he wants to upgrade the defensive line this offseason, and the upcoming draft is considered deep at the position.
The CBA was scheduled to expire at 10:59 p.m. Central on Thursday before owners and the union agreed to a 24-hour extension. If and when a work stoppage begins, all negotiations and player transactions will be put on hold.