The Vikings “X-Factor” Nominee Will Excite You

2022 Vikings Betting Odds Tracker: Week 11
Nov 13, 2022; Orchard Park, New York, USA; A Minnesota Vikings fan. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports.

The Minnesota Vikings open the 2023 campaign in four days, the second hurrah with head coach Kevin O’Connell.

Minnesota won 13 games in O’Connell’s first voyage, the most by a first-year Vikings skipper in team history.

The Vikings “X-Factor” Nominee Will Excite You

And with the regular season football around the bend, folks are serving up predictions and opinions like wildfire. The Ringer examined “X-Factor” players for each NFL team this week, and for the Vikings, the nominee was an exciting candidate, rookie WR Jordan Addison.

Nominee Will
Apr 27, 2023; Kansas City, MO, USA; USC wide receiver Jordan Addison poses for a photo on the NFL Draft Red Carpet before the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft at Union Station. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

The Vikings grabbed Addison out of Round 1 in April’s draft, the fourth wideout off the draftboard after Jaxon Smith-Njigba (Seattle Seahawks), Quentin Johnston (Los Angeles Chargers), and Zay Flowers (Baltimore Ravens). Addison hopes to translate his productive resume from the University of Pittsburgh and USC to the pros.

The Ringer’s Ben Solak explained the Addison X-Factor connection, “I generally try to avoid rookies on this list — but that’s impossible here. I am very confident this defense will be a mess (name as many Vikings cornerbacks off the top of your head as you can: go) and that Justin Jefferson will keep this offense dangerous. But the ceiling on the offense is yet unreached.”

Fans Finalize Prediction
Nov 19, 2022; Pasadena, California, USA; Southern California Trojans wide receiver Jordan Addison (3) runs the ball against the UCLA Bruins during the first half at the Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports.

Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah selected Addison with the 23rd overall pick four months ago in a spot where he was expected to trade back for extra draft capital or choose a defensive player. But these are the Vikings, after all, a team renowned for wide receiver majesty, and the young executive banged the button for pass-catching affluence.

Solak continued, “I liked what I saw last year in using Jefferson’s gravity to make life easy for the recently extended T.J. Hockenson, but Addison has orders of magnitude more juice than Hock. If he hits, the Vikings can really punish teams who overplay Jefferson, and subsequently become a passing offense that can truly hang with the best of them. The most important rookie receiver in the league right here.”

Have Hybrid Gig
Rookie minicamp highlights from Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Jordan Addison’s first practice as a Viking after being selected in the first round of the 2023 NFL Draft. Addison played at the University of Pittsburgh and USC in college.

In May, ESPN projected Addison’s 2023 statistics in the ballpark of 766 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns for his rookie campaign, which would be a welcome sight among Vikings fans accustomed to riches at the WR spot.

The Vikings new playmaker tallied 3,134 receiving yards and 29 touchdowns in three seasons at Pittsburgh and USC and is considered a target-heavy playmaker. If needed, Addison can fill in as WR1, at least according to his draft scouting report.

6 Winners from
Aug 5, 2023; Eagan, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Jordan Addison (3) takes the field during training camp at Twin Cities Orthopedic Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports.

Earlier this week, tossed Addison at the top of its “Breakout Candidates” list.

The Vikings take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this Sunday to kick off the regular season, and Addison is expected to join the fun.

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 Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by