One Vikings Trade Theory Is Just Too Absurd

Predicts Unpleasant Vikings

There’s a saying in sports media: “There’s a take for everything.” It’s true, and a recent trade theory fits the criteria, specifically applicable to the Minnesota Vikings.

One Vikings Trade Theory Is Just Too Absurd

Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah conducted a wild trade last week, shipping two 2nd-Round picks to Houston for the Texans’ 2024 1st-Rounder (Pick No. 23) and a late-round pick swap. Most believe the young executive will execute another trade — on draft night or before — for a quarterback of the future after Kirk Cousins departed for the Atlanta Falcons one week ago.

Vikings Trade
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But if that theory doesn’t materialize, one absurd theory is frolicking around the internet: Minnesota somehow trading for Justin Herbert, the Los Angeles Chargers signal-caller.

The idea goes like this — new head coach Jim Harbaugh, at all costs, could find a way to draft J.J. McCarthy, his quarterback at Michigan, a squad that won the National Championship 10 weeks ago. Then, Herbert would apparently become expendable, and a quarterback-needy team like Minnesota could swoop in for the swap.

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SKOR North’s Phil Mackey advanced the Herbert theory last weekend, “I make the phone call, just to explore it. I think swallowing all that dead money would be really stupid and problematic with that franchise, but you’re damn right I make the phone call.”’s Chris Schad published an article the same day as Mackey’s theory. He wrote about Herbert to Minnesota, “This is a crazy scenario — especially since trading Justin Herbert would result in a $108.5 million cap hit as a pre-June 1 move — but Harbaugh once drafted Colin Kaepernick to sit behind Alex Smith during his time in San Francisco. Would he pass on a player that he believes should be the No. 1 overall pick? Or would he choose to trade down and surround Herbert with a new cast of weapons?”

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

“If Harbaugh chooses McCarthy — or the Giants leapfrog the Vikings to take him — it could lead the Vikings to another path,” Schad added.

The problem with the Herbert-to-Vikings whispers is that it shouldn’t even be a viable theory. It’s like daydreaming about the trade price for Patrick Mahomes. Fun? Yes. Worthwhile as a possibility? Nope.

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Foremost, why on earth would the Chargers willingly trade an elite quarterback who has yet to enter his career’s prime? The man is 26 years old, and does one really believe that Harbaugh’s first order of business would be to trade a borderline Top 5 NFL quarterback?

Secondarily — arguably more deadly for Los Angeles — is the dead cap matter. If the Chargers traded Herbert, they’d eat over $100 million no matter when the trade hit on the calendar, making the Denver Broncos’ recent sins with Russell Wilson look pedestrian.

The Chargers will not trade Herbert, and in theory, suggesting he could be the Vikings’ next quarterback isn’t grounded in reality.

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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