WR Market Continues to Thin for Vikings

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More hints suggest the Minnesota Vikings are content with third-year playmaker K.J. Osborn at WR2 in 2023 or will be drafting one early in the NFL draft 28 days from now.

Two big-name wideouts remain available on the open market, DeAndre Hopkins and Odell Beckham, and it doesn’t seem the Vikings have serious interest in either man.

WR Market Continues to Thin for Vikings

The Vikings have maintained a formidable one-two punch at WR1-WR2 since the end of 2015, with various iterations of Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen or Thielen and Justin Jefferson. But the dynamic duo days, at least per name recognition, could be ending.

ESPN’s Dan Graziano wrote Thursday about the Beckham sweepstakes, “Odell Beckham Jr. has offers on the table from multiple teams, and I am told the Jets are the most likely landing spot but that Beckham could be waiting to make sure the Aaron Rodgers deal gets completed before finalizing his own decision. Baltimore has made a push for Beckham as well.”

WR Market Continues
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With the Jets, Aaron Rodgers’ almost-new team, and Ravens as frontrunners for the Super Bowl champion wide receiver, Minnesota appears to be on the outside looking in — if they were even looking in the first place. The Vikings attended Beckham’s open workout three weeks ago, which may have been the end of the flirtation.

Beckham initially and reportedly wanted $20 million per season but since personally denounced that rumor and could fetch between $10 and $15 million annually if a team is willing.

On Hopkins, also a premiere talent of his era, Graziano reported, “Hopkins showed last year he has a lot left in the tank, but I couldn’t find a team at the meetings that sounded eager to bring him on without the Cardinals eating some of the money. And eating some of the money would seem to defeat the purpose of Arizona trading him.”

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“It sounds like the history between Hopkins and new Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien is an impediment to his landing in New England. The Cowboys already made their trade for Brandin Cooks. There are still teams out there looking for receiver help, such as the Chiefs, Ravens and Giants, but Hopkins’ salary is giving people pause for now,” Graziano said about teams pursuing the soon-to-be former Cardinal.

The Vikings were never credibly associated with any Hopkins trade rumors, but in theory, pairing him with Justin Jefferson could net dividends.

Also this week, ex-Jacksonville Jaguars pass-catcher Marvin Jones reunited with an old friend in the Detroit Lions. Yes — that’s the same Jones who’s torched the Vikings a couple of times. He was never a WR2 candidate for Minnesota this offseason but is another name off the board.

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With every passing day, especially non-involvement in the chase for Beckham and Hopkins, the Vikings WR2 options dwindle. They’re left with underwhelming options of Kenny Golladay, Chosen Anderson, Julio Jones, or Jarvis Landry.

And if those are the options, the team should probably greenlight the incumbent WR K.J. Osborn as WR2 and call it good.

Otherwise, an early-round WR Vikings draft selection could be on the menu in four weeks.

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,’ and The Doors (the band).

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