The Vikings have released cornerback Jeff Gladney, the team announced in a statement. The 2020 first-round pick out of TCU was arrested in April on charges of felony domestic assault and was indicted by a grand jury in Dallas on Tuesday morning.
While the legal process in that case still has a ways to go, the Vikings have made their decision to part ways with Gladney. Here is the team's statement:
"Following our review of today’s indictment against Jeff Gladney, we have decided to release Jeff immediately. As we have previously said, we take these matters very seriously and condemn all forms of domestic violence. Due to the ongoing legal nature of this matter, we are unable to provide further comment."
Gladney was specifically charged with "domestic violence by impeding breathing, for 'intentionally, knowingly, and recklessly' causing bodily injury and applying pressure to a woman’s neck and throat," per ESPN's Adam Schefter. "If convicted, he could serve up to 10 years in prison."
The allegations against Gladney were extremely disturbing when they first came out. He allegedly hit, choked, and dragged his then-girlfriend on the ground while in a moving vehicle after a dispute over text messages on her cellphone. The victim recently filed a civil lawsuit that alleges Gladney beat her for over two hours and later tried to bribe her silence.
Gladney is now subject to waivers, but if claimed, he would reportedly be placed on the commissioner's exempt list. It seems highly unlikely that another team would make that move, given the optics.
The biggest question for the Vikings now is what happens financially. Gladney's base salary voids for the next three years have been voided, saving the team $1.1 million this year and $4.17 million in total over the next three years, per Ben Goessling of the Star Tribune. The Vikings will also look to recoup $4.17 million in signing bonus prorations over the next three years, which would be a cap credit in 2022.
The Vikings' roster now stands at 85 players, with four more on the Reserve/COVID-19 list. That includes a total of six quarterback across the active roster and the COVID list.
Gladney, the No. 31 overall pick last year, started 15 games as a rookie.
Update: Gladney's agent Brian Overstreet has released a statement. "It's a good thing innocent until proven guilty still exists in this country. Unfortunately, the Vikings don't view it the same way." Here's the full statement:
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