It seems like today is the day that I go against my typical motis operandi, as I just ended up writing an overtly political piece on our sister site, purplePTSD.com, regarding Trump’s discussions with professional sports commissioners this week. I’m going to follow that up by taking down an article from an author on one of our competing websites, TheVikingAge.com. I typically don’t do that, as it can seem catty and confrontational, so I want to make it clear that I love the idea posed by Dean Jones, as I most likely would’ve written something similar (if I hadn’t spent the beginning of my day humble bragging about my political science/sociology of law degrees, marking this the first time anyone has bragged about a political science degree).
If made it abundantly clear that the wide receiver position is my jam. I am, after all, a child of the Randy Moss/ Cris Carter era, and I’ve wanted nothing more since Moss was traded after the 2004 season than for someone, anyone, remotely close to his level of talent/domination to rock the purple and gold.
As much as I loved Diggs (I’ve said he WAS my favorite Viking multiple times but for the last time in my article, ‘What Exactly Did You Have to be Mad About, Diggs?’), I couldn’t rectify his off-the-field/on-the-Twitter behavior with his production on the field. After all, as important as he was to this team and as good as he was, he was never near Moss’ level and the reality is that… Sure. The Vikings have had a quarterback/offensive coordinator carousel for the beginning of his career, which did limit his ability to get the sort of stats he clearly believed he not only could but should (have).
Regardless, Diggs has yet to make a Pro Bowl, he did have a season with over 100 grabs and another with over 1,100, but those came in the first two seasons of the Kirk Cousins regime. So, his anger about Cousins in 2019, or Cousins’ extension, just seemed selfish and a bit Antonio Brown-y (they’re very similar players on the field (height/weight/40 time/route running), as he essentially used social media to force his way out of Minnesota… for Buffalo.
Despite all that, the Vikings were reportedly committed to keeping Diggs in purple until the Bills came at them with an author they could not refuse. But, Jones’ article isn’t about Diggs, but rather the void that Diggs left. That void could be filled by Beckham Jr, Jones writes, as he’s one of the best receivers in the league and objectively a better receiver than Diggs.
That having been said, you could see a lot of mirrors between Diggs in 2019 and OBJ in 2019.
There was this:
And then there was him asking teams not named the Browns to “come get [him] out of here”
I think you get where I’m going with this.
Why would the Vikings trade a first-round pick (and more) to bring in a receiver who acts out the way OBJ has, to replace Diggs? If that was the case, why wouldn’t they have traded for now Cardinals receiver DeAndre Hopkins instead? Sure, Hopkins angered the powers that be in Houston but what he did had merit. He wanted to restructure his deal, which the team thought was bad enough to “leak” to the media, but that move backfired as teams in the NFL void contracts left and right on a nearly daily basis.
OBJ is a mercurial headcase and while he could actually do amazing things in Minnesota, and perhaps even be dangerous enough on the field to warrant a phone call or two from Rick Spielman/Mike Zimmer (both of which are entering the final year on their contracts with the Vikings), I can’t imagine that they’d want to bring in OBJ, who would then have forced his way out of his last two teams (which, if you’re keeping track, are the only two teams he’s played for in the NFL).
Instead, the Vikings need to do their due diligence and actually draft a receiver in the first-or-second round that isn’t a complete bust. While history shows that that’s a tall order, there’s still a chance that they could end up finding the next OBJ or Stefon Diggs in the draft.
You know, like most teams.