Earlier today, we tried to cobble together various guidelines regarding the convoluted-yet-important formula for determining compensatory draft picks.
We’ve since acquired some more information about the little-known and largely misunderstood device for giving teams extra draft picks to replace the veterans who have left for free agency, specifically as the process applies to Vikings defensive end Jared Allen.
Despite widespread reports and speculation that the Vikings would get a third-round compensatory pick in 2015 if Allen leaves as a free agent in 2014, a source with knowledge of the formula tells PFT that the Vikings would be limited to a fifth-round compensatory pick for Allen.
The system is designed to protect teams who lose players after their rookie deals have expired. For players like Allen, who have completed two multi-year contracts, the impact of the departure is less significant.
Per the source, there’s an exception to this rule. For quarterbacks who leave via free agency, it doesn’t matter whether one, two, or more contracts have been completed — a third-round pick could still be available as the maximum compensation, based on the other relevant factors.
This means that, if the Vikings are getting offers for Allen, they need to compare the proposed trade compensation in 2014 with the fact that, at most, they’ll get a fifth-round compensatory pick in 205.
Which is basically a sixth-round pick since it comes after all of the regular fifth-round picks.
Which makes it roughly worth a seventh-round pick in 2014.
Which means that if the Vikings could get a third-round pick for Allen in 2014 and avoid paying him $7.5 million for nine early 2014 preseason games, they should take the deal.
And then take off the ski mask.