Purple Rumor Mill: Jeffery Simmons, 2022 Draft Panic Was Premature, a Thielen Trade?

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports.

VikingsTerritory’s Purple Rumor Mill is a two-day chronicle each week. All the week’s rumors are lassoed and plopped in two spots articles on Saturday and Sunday for review. Today is the October 29th edition.

Purple Rumor Mill: Jeffery Simmons, 2022 Draft Panic Was Premature, a Thielen Trade?

Remember — rumors are rumors. What you read on weekends in these pieces is what the world is talking about pertaining to the Vikings, not necessarily items that will come to fruition.

Here’s the second batch of the week. Yesterday’s can be read here.

Rumor: The Vikings should trade for Tennessee Titans defensive lineman Jeffery Simmons.

Jeffery Simmons
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports.

A popular Vikings-themed show, PurpleFTW, devoted a whole episode to this theory, trading for Titans pass rusher Jeffery Simmons.

Of course, adding Simmons to the Vikings roster — or any team’s roster — would be marvelous. There is no debate. However, a Simmons trade would cost a hefty sum. He’s 26 years old and one of the best defensive tackles in the sport.

Minnesota would have to donate a 1st-Rounder — at minimum — for Simmon’s services, and the Vikings need to retain all 1st-Round picks for future quarterback planning. Simmons would look great in purple but don’t expect Kwesi Adofo-Mensah to part with a 1st-Rounder.

Rumor: Folks panicked prematurely, and the Vikings 2022 draft class isn’t as doomed as once thought.

Ingram Starting
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

This was Adofo-Mensah’s first draft class:

  • R1: Lewis Cine, S
  • R2: Andrew Booth Jr., CB
  • R2: Ed Ingram,
  • R3: Brian Asamoah, LB
  • R4: Akayleb Evans, CB
  • R5: Esezi Otomewo, DE
  • R5: Ty Chandler, RB
  • R6: Vederian Lowe, OT
  • R6: Jalen Nailor, WR
  • R7: Nick Muse, TE

Cine hasn’t played much after breaking his leg one year ago. His trajectory is concerning, rest assured.

Booth, Ingram, Evans, and Chandler all play on gamedays. Asamoah will likely have a larger role in 2024. Otomewo didn’t pan out and plays for the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Lowe was shipped to New England for a 6th-Round pick.

And Nailor and Muse are still to be determined.

This is not a bad, horrible, or suspect draft class. People panicked this summer for no reason.

Rumor: After six games in Carolina, Adam Thielen could traded to a contender by the league’s trade deadline.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports.

Thielen has played all of six games for the Panthers, so a trade this soon appears odd on the surface, but that doesn’t prevent the relentless trade rumor mill from suggesting the 33-year-old could be sent to a contender.

He ranks 14th in receiving yards (509) and 10th in receiving touchdowns (4) heading into Week 8 and has also played one fewer game than most receivers because of Carolina’s early bye. In his first season away from the Minnesota Vikings, the folkloric Minnesota figure is on pace for 139 receptions, 1,442 yards, and 11 touchdowns.

This week, SI.com envisioned a Thielen reunion with Stefon Diggs in Buffalo, particularly because most folks didn’t believe Thielen would be this productive as a WR1 with the Panthers. Mike Fisher explained, “Maybe the Panthers want to keep him because he’s a helper in the development of prized rookie QB Bryce Young’s favorite target early on. And maybe the Bills do not want to overreach here because Thielen is under contract through the end of next season and is already 33 years old. But if the Bills are looking for a moderate ‘go-for-it’ swap?”

Thielen and Diggs spent five seasons together in Minnesota.

“Thielen was thought to have been out of gas in Minnesota, where once upon a time he teamed with Diggs as one of the NFL’s top wideout combos. But this year, he’s got 49 catches for 509 yards and four touchdowns through six games. Is there some magic to be recaptured with Thielen and Diggs? Depending on the price, it is not difficult to see the match,” Fisher added about Thielen-to-Bills.

USA Today also wiggled into the Thielen rumor mill, hinting the Baltimore Ravens should pick up the phone. Cory Woodroof wrote before Week 7, “If you’re Baltimore, you call Carolina and offer, say, a young receiver in Rashod Bateman and a low-round pick for Thielen. The Panthers get a young receiver who could use a change of scenery to pair with Young, and Thielen gets to go to a contender that could use his veteran savvy.”

In theory, Thielen could be traded, but he just arrived in Carolina, and Bryce Young needs tools to aid in his development. Thielen probably stays put.


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 OverTheCap.com.

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