The end could be in sight for the Jay Cutler trade rumors, as they went from rumor to press release status. Cutler will almost certainly be traded, but the destination team still hasn't been decided.
It seemed like an early April Fool's Day prank, but the announcement Tuesday by Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen that disgruntled quarterback Jay Cutler
is in fact on the market and that the team will try to move him by the draft has many fans – including those fans of the Vikings – more than a little intrigued.
The announcement came a day after Cutler surrendered $100,000 he was owed under the terms of his contract to attend the team's offseason workout program. Apparently, his willingness to give up approximately 10 percent of his 2009 income not to play with his teammates was enough for Bowlen, who said Tuesday that is seems almost inevitable that Cutler will have to be traded.
The Vikings have been linked as the third team in a three-team deal that would have sent Cutler to the Vikings, QB Matt Cassel
to the Broncos and the Vikings' first-round draft pick to the Patriots. That deal eventually fell through and Cassel was traded to the Chiefs directly by the Patriots and new Denver head coach Josh McDaniels
has been on the outs with Cutler ever since.
While the Denver announcement doesn't necessarily mean that the Vikings are in the market for landing the talented young QB, it has re-opened a can of worms that has been the source of speculation in Minnesota akin to the Brett Favre
rumors last summer. However, it once again has become a talker among Vikings fans who desperately want a "Tier-One" quarterback to help push them to the next level among NFL teams.
How serious are the Broncos about trading Cutler? His jersey is no longer available on the team's website. Even Dre Bly, who was released last month, still has his jersey available for sale, which seems a little strange.
Yahoo! Sports listed six teams that are interested in trading for Cutler, but the Vikings aren't one of them. The teams include the Buccaneers, Jets, Bears, Lions, Browns and 49ers. A Denver Post report mentioned the Vikings' original interest in exploring a trade for Cutler.
NFL owners are going to vote at their May meetings whether to allow a one-week window of opportunity prior to the start of free agency for teams to be allowed to negotiate with potential free agents. Teams would not be allowed to have personal contact with the free-agent players, but it would give teams looking to re-sign their own players a chance to see what level of interest there would be in other teams looking to sign their players and, according to Rich McKay of the Atlanta Falcons, would "create a more level playing field for the home team."
Tickets go on sale today for the Vikings annual draft party at Winter Park. Tickets are $15 for general admission and $70 for V.I.P. tickets. Call 612-33-VIKES or visit ticketmaster.com if you are interested in attending.
For those hoping the Vikings would sign wide receiver Torry Holt, that wish took a major hit Tuesday. Not only did Holt have what was described as a productive visit with the Jaguars Monday, he is scheduled to meet with Tennessee officials today. Prior to his being released by the Rams, St. Louis and the Titans tried to work out a trade for the veteran wide receiver that fell through when they couldn't agree on compensation.
Quarterback Matthew Stafford, regarded by some as the top pick in this month's draft, had a private workout with the Lions – holders of the first overall pick – Tuesday. All reports say that workout and interview went very well.