Being a first-round pick pays well to start and it can really lead to big dollars in a fifth-year contract option, but only if a player lives up to the hype of being a first-round selection.
That isn't the case for Vikings wide receiver Laquon Treadwell, who has just 56 receptions in three years since being taken 23rd overall in the 2016 NFL Draft. For perspective, All-Pro Adam Thielen, who was the exact opposite of a first-round pick, going undrafted, had 58 catches in the first six weeks last season.
With that, Treadwell is now expected to enter the fourth year of his contract without any long-term guarantee from the Vikings. Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press reports that Minnesota is not expected to pick up Treadwell's fifth-year option by the May 2 deadline.
No contract option puts a ton of pressure on Treadwell to not only be productive in 2019, but also stay healthy or risk the possibility of entering free agency without much more than a bust label attached to his name.
Another reason the Vikings could avoid giving big dollars to Treadwell even if he blossoms next season is that they already have more than $27 million tied up in 2020 alone through Stefon Diggs and Thielen.
Diggs has a 2020 cap hit of $14.5 million and Thielen's cap hit that year is $12.8 million. Diggs' annual cap hit stays between $12-$15 million through 2023, while Thielen's remains $13.4 million to $15.45 million through 2024.