The World Has ‘Grades’ for Vikings Big Trade

The World Has "Grades" for Vikings Big Trade
Kwesi Adofo-Mensah

Mere hours before the NFL’s trade deadline, the Minnesota Vikings bartered with the Detroit Lions for tight end T.J. Hockenson.

The Vikings added Hockenson, a 2023 4th-Round pick, and a conditional 2024 4th-Round pick from Detroit for a 2nd-Round pick from 2023 and a 2024 3rd-Round pick. Adofo-Mensah traded down two rounds next year and one round in 2024 to land Hockenson.

Former Lions RB Chides Team for Hockenson Trade
T.J. Hockenson

And when Hockenson takes the field Sunday at the Washington Commanders, he’ll be the first tight end with 1st-Round draft credentials to play for the Vikings since 1967. The last guy was a man named Marlin McKeever.

The trade news on Hockenson was stunning, as most Vikings faithful figured the franchise would sign a ho-hum, aging free-agent tight end like Eric Ebron if it signed anyone at all. But since Adofo-Mensah took the big job in January, he’s shown about four times that he’s not afraid to rock the boat via trade to improve the depth chart.

In the immediacy of the trade deadline, NFL pundits rushed to assign a “grade” to the trade for the Vikings and Lions. It’s a favorite pastime of football fans, although waiting for about two years for adjudication is probably wiser. Still, in The Digital Age, patience is limited, and grades float around the internet.

Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson. © Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK.

For the Vikings, these are the grades from various media outlets:

As for Detroit:

SB Nation called the transaction “a perfect move for the Vikings, who did not give up much to acquire Hockenson from a division rival.”

Meanwhile, Maurice Moton from Bleacher Report opined on the Lions side of things, “Because Hockenson had an inconsistent role in the Lions’ aerial attack, they won’t miss his production if wideout Amon-Ra St. Brown continues to ascend into stardom and rookie first-round wide receiver Jameson Williams makes an impact once he recovers from a torn ACL.”

From the sources listed above, the average of all grades for the Vikings is a B+. The Lions average is C+.

Check back in November of 2024 when honest-to-goodness trade grades on the transaction can be assigned.


Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).