Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr is entering the final year of his rookie contract. Until he gets some long-term security via a new contract, Barr is taking every precaution to make sure his future is secure.

On Wednesday, a day after Barr reported to the team, he revealed the reason behind his absence from Vikings voluntary OTAs last week. It turns out, he wasn't sitting out because he wanted a new contract. Instead, he skipped OTAs because he was getting an injury insurance policy.

"I had to protect myself and get an injury insurance policy," Barr said, per ESPN's Courtney Cronin. "It took like a week to get situated, so I got that, and now I'm good to go."

That seems like a more than fair excuse. As our Jason La Canfora recently wrote, OTAs "don't matter." Barr's absence really won't impact the Vikings' quest to win the NFC North again -- just like how Tom Brady's absence from OTAs won't impact the Patriots' Super Bowl aspirations. 

"Organized team activities are, dare I say it, damn near fake news when it comes to the litany of factors that go into winning seasons and losing seasons and player development and everything else," La Canfora wrote.

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Barr, who entered the league as the ninth-overall pick in 2014, has established himself as a top outside linebacker on one of the game's best defenses. In four seasons, all of which he's spent with Minnesota, he's collected 198 solo tackles, 10.5 sacks, 20 passes defended, one interception, and six forced fumbles. He's been voted to three Pro Bowls. According to Pro Football Focus, he graded out as the seventh-best 4-3 outside linebacker this past season, when the Vikings finished as the second-best defense by DVOA en route to an appearance in the NFC title game. Along the way, Barr was accused of using a dirty hit that broke the collarbone of Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, but it's worth noting that Barr wasn't fined for the hit.

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Barr is scheduled to bring in $12.3 million under his fifth-year option, which actually ranks as the seventh-highest cap hit among all outside linebackers, according to Spotrac. So, he's going to be well compensated for his efforts during the coming season. But for Barr, he probably values long-term security more than one lucrative season.

"My agent's doing a great job," Barr said. "They're having conversations. I don't know too many details on that. My focus is here with the team and getting ready."

For Minnesota, it could be tough to squeeze Barr into the budget. The Vikings began their offseason giving quarterback Kirk Cousins a fully guaranteed $84 million deal. They already gave linebacker Eric Kendricks a five-year, $50 million extension in April. 

And it's not just Barr who is scheduled to become a free agent after the coming season. So are receiver Stefon Diggs and defensive end Danielle Hunter, both of who might be viewed as more important players than Barr. According to Cronin, $17.6 million in available cap space exists for the Vikings. So, they might have to get creative here.

In the meantime, the Vikings can enjoy the 2018 season knowing that they have legitimate chance to win the Super Bowl after they spent the offseason strengthening their roster both in free agency (Cousins and Sheldon Richardson) and the draft (CB Mike Hughes). Tough contract decisions are looming after the season, but those decisions can be put on hold while they pursue their championship dream.