Adam Thielen Claps Back at Frustrating Narrative

Thielen Forecasted
Adam Thielen answered questions on his mentality moving to a new state and playing with a new team. Thielen left the Vikings after the 2022 season, latching onto the Carolina Panthers for 3 years and $25 million.

The Minnesota Vikings released Adam Thielen on March 10th, ending a memorable era lasting 10 years for the native Minnesotan.

Nine days later, Thielen latched onto the Carolina Panthers for three years and $25 million, an out-of-nowhere landing spot for the 32-year-old as most believed he’d choose a Super Bowl-contending team.

Adam Thielen Claps Back at Frustrating Narrative

Thielen played all 17 games in his final season with the Vikings but tabulated the smallest statistical output of his once-unforeseen career. But don’t tell him that. Thielen trusts his personal performance and ‘tape’ more than anything to do with stats, perhaps implying the Vikings misused him in 2022.

Adam Thielen Claps Back
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In a tell-all interview with The Athletic this week, Thielen vehemently pushed back against the frustrating narrative suggesting that he’s ‘old.’ He told The Athletic’s Joseph Person, “It is weird for me because it happened so fast. I feel like I just came into the league, and I was just trying to make it for one day. And now, all of a sudden, boom, people are saying you’re too old and too slow. And I’m like, wait a second. I just got here. How am I too old and too slow?”

The Vikings play the Panthers at Thielen’s new house on October 1st, affording the Minnesota State alumnus the opportunity to show his old friends that he’s still very much productive.

Adam Thielen Gets
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“At the end of the day, people don’t actually watch the tape. They just look at stats and look at what people are saying about someone, and they don’t actually look and see what you’re doing. Sometimes it can be frustrating as a player. But at the same time, it gives you a little chip on your shoulder,” Thielen continued.

Even revisiting tape from 2022, Thielen didn’t look quite the same as his phenomenal 2018 or 2020 seasons. But that must be a poppycock theory if Thielen’s self-confidence is to be trusted.

He concluded about the ‘old’ dialogue, “When I’m training in the offseason, that’s in the back of my head. I better work my butt off to show I can still run and be explosive and still look like I’m young, even though to most people — especially in this league — I’m old.”

Thielen turns 33 in August.

3 Popular Vikings Could
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Thankfully for his sake, Thielen can blend his age-33 season with Bryce Young’s age-22 campaign in September. The Panthers will embark on the Young era before too long, although, in theory, veteran Andy Dalton could start out of the gate.

Thielen said in March about Dalton as his potential signal-caller, “When they added Andy Dalton, that was a huge part to me going there. Just knowing that he’s a veteran guy who has played a lot of ball can really groom and help lead a team and a young quarterback who will be coming in.”

“I couldn’t be more excited to be a Carolina Panther,” Thielen told The Pat McAfee Show the day after joining Carolina.

Thielen hasn’t recorded a 1,000-yard season since 2018.

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).

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