The 26-year-old defensive end has been a no-show at TCO Performance Center in Eagan over the past couple of weeks while most of his teammates have participated in organized team activities. Though the workouts are voluntary, Hunter’s absence has been conspicuous with nearly 95 percent of the roster present.
Asked last week about the situation, coach Mike Zimmer said he had not heard from Hunter.
If the Vikings have gained any clarity in the past week, they are keeping that information under wraps. Asked on Thursday morning about his communication with Hunter this offseason, co-defensive coordinator Andre Patterson replied, “I will keep that between me and D and that’s all I’m going to say on that.”
This situation has been more than a year in the making. Reportedly unhappy with his current contract, which pays him an average value of $14.4 million per season, Hunter missed all of last season with a neck injury. He is considered to be underpaid for his position with other pass rushers earning significantly more annually.
Likely the only way this saga will be resolved is if the Vikings ultimately agree to pay Hunter more money.