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Vikings wrap draft class with signing of Air Force long snapper Austin Cutting

Air Force Academy graduate Austin Cutting signed to the Vikings roster on Monday, July 22, 2019. Cutting is only the eighth Air Force Academy graduate to be drafted by the NFL, according to the Vikings homepage.

ANDREW KRAMMER/STAR TRIBUNE/TNS

By ANDREW KRAMMER | Star Tribune | Published: July 22, 2019

MINNEAPOLIS (Tribune News Service) — Austin Cutting will fulfill his two-year commitment to the Air Force while playing with the Vikings.

The fine print is yet to be determined between Cutting and the Air Force, according to his agent Darren Deloatche, but he has been assigned to the Air Force Academy and will be stationed in Minnesota. Cutting will practice with the Vikings when rookies start training camp on Tuesday.

Cutting reported to the TCO Performance Center on Monday and signed a four-year deal worth up to $2.4 million. The Vikings now have all 12 draft picks under contract.

He is the latest graduate from a military academy to pursue an NFL career alongside service obligations. Patriots long snapper Joe Cardona, a 2015 draft pick out of Navy, initially deferred his service to the offseason in exchange for a once-a-week work day at a nearby Navy prep school.

However, Cutting is not deferring his service. He has been given the title of first-year recruiting lieutenant by the Air Force Academy and will help the Air Force recruit in areas they’ve historically struggled while stationed in Minnesota, according to Deloatche. For now, they’ve told Cutting his main focus can be the NFL.

Cutting will compete with incumbent long snapper Kevin McDermott. The first full-team practice is Friday.

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