Where Do the Vikings Turn at WR3?

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The Minnesota Vikings offseason started a few weeks ago, and free agency is around the corner. As general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah looks to continue a competitive rebuild, fixing holes on the roster is a must. Among them is the WR3 position vacated by K.J. Osborn. Who do they turn to?

Where Do the Vikings Turn at WR3?

It remains doubtful that K.J. Osborn will return to the Vikings after being eligible to hit free agency for the first time in his career. After his rookie contract expired, the former Minnesota wideout can test the open market for the first time. He can seek an opportunity to move up on the depth chart, and even if he had shown more for the Vikings, that wasn’t happening behind Justin Jefferson and Jordan Addison.

Internally, Minnesota could consider Brandon Powell. The former Los Angeles Rams wide receiver has shown exciting bursts in minimal opportunities, but expecting him to thrive in an expanded role is not a surefire bet. Kevin O’Connell obviously has familiarity there and showed a preferential desire to acquire him, but that doesn’t mean a starting role is on the horizon.

If the Vikings look at free agency, there are a couple of guys that stand out:

Gabriel Davis

turn at WR3
Buffalo Bills wide receiver Gabe Davis (13) scored on this 4-yard pass. Syndication: Democrat and Chronicle. © Jamie Germano/Rochester Democrat and Chronicle / USA TODAY NETWORK.

Similar to Osborn, Davis is hitting free agency for the first time after being a fourth-round pick by the Buffalo Bills back in 2020. He has drawn 47 starts across 64 career games, and his yards per reception numbers are impressive. Working in the shadow of Stefon Diggs takes some serious tongue-biting, but Davis showed an ability to be productive behind a big-name wideout, and he did so without causing any issues. Davis is a highly efficient wideout who found the end zone plenty despite limited opportunities, and that could push him near the top of Minnesota’s wish list.

D.J. Chark

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A bigger-bodied wide receiver, Chark will be looking for his fourth NFL franchise in free agency. Following four years with the Jaguars, the former LSU product went to Detroit and Carolina. He has never had an ideal quarterback situation but has shown an ability to provide significant production. He has previously worked as the number one option and has also operated in a more rotational role. Chark’s size breaks the mold a bit for a WR3, but he could play the role of a possession type for a Vikings team without T.J. Hockenson at least part way into 2024.

Curtis Samuel

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More of your traditional third wide receiver, Samuel is shorter in stature but speedy. He saw a bit more success after escaping Carolina but was again limited by quarterback play in Washington. He could be cut from the same cloth as Powell but also represent a sizable skill upgrade in multiple departments. A former second-round pick, Samuel playing behind both Jefferson and Addison may allow him an opportunity to thrive.

Minnesota must decide how they will handle the third wideout position, and where they look for those services remains to be seen. More than a handful of free-agent options help a team look for answers.

Ted Schwerzler is a blogger from the Twin Cities that is focused on all things Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Vikings. He’s active on Twitter and writes weekly for Twins Daily. As a former college athlete and avid sports fan, covering our pro teams with a passion has always seemed like such a natural outlet.