Adam Thielen Shines Light on Wild Old Trade Rumors

Offseason Grade Do
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It is unclear if talks actually went anywhere, but according to Adam Thielen, there was a path five years ago from the wide receiver to the New England Patriots.

Adam Thielen Shines Light on Wild Old Trade Rumors

Thielen now plays for the Carolina Panthers, one year removed from the Minnesota Vikings. And he sat down with Pardon My Take podcast last week and revealed some insights on former Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and trade rumors from 2019.

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Foremost, Thielen notably had beef with Belichick in a 2018 game, and the veteran pass-catcher touched on that with the PMT panel.

Thielen then shed light on the trade theory, “Well, it’s funny, actually after that, I believe going into that next offseason — he reached out to the team about possibly trading for me, trying to get me to come under there. So it must’ve been a good impression on him. He must’ve liked that kind of tenacity or competitiveness.”

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The revelation is a bit ironic because Patriots fans have said for years that Belichick would want nothing to do with Thielen because of the incident. Unless Thielen is fibbing, those folks were wrong.

A Thielen-less Vikings in 2019 certainly would’ve altered history. But the trade rumor checks out as Thielen was at the peak of his powers in 2018 and 2019. He fired up a career season in 2018, and in 2019, he caught the pass that set up Minnesota’s memorable triumph over the New Orleans Saints — one of them — in the Wildcard round of the postseason. Then quarterback Kirk Cousins connected with Thielein in overtime, and soon after, Cousins delivered a jump ball for tight end Kyle Rudolph, who walked off New Orleans.

Vikings Draft
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Had the Vikings listened to or obliged New England’s trade requests, they would’ve needed a new wide receiver next to Stefon Diggs, probably from the draft. The 2019 draft was a mixed bag for talent, headlined by men like Deebo Samuel and A.J. Brown, with others like N’Keal Harry, Mecole Hardman, and JJ Arcega-Whiteside in the mix before the end of Round 2.

Ultimately, of course, Thielen went nowhere for the next four years, further solidifying his legacy as a Minnesotan. It wasn’t until the 2023 offseason that Thielen departed Minnesota after encountering a salary cap casualty situation.

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In New England, Thielen would’ve played with Tom Brady for one season, Brady’s final in the AFC. Brady later latched onto the Buccaneers and won a Super Bowl.

Thielen will turn 34 in two months.

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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