Purple Rumor Mill: Justin Fields and the Vikings, Price Gouging by Patriots, London

Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports.

VikingsTerritory’s Purple Rumor Mill is a two-day chronicle each week. All the week’s Vikings rumors are lassoed and plopped in two spots — articles on Saturday and Sunday — for review. Today is the April 6th edition.

Purple Rumor Mill: Justin Fields and the Vikings, Price Gouging by Patriots, London

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 first batch of the week.

Rumor: The Vikings explored trade options for Justin Fields.

purple rumor mill
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports.

Minnesota is expected to draft a rookie quarterback in 19 days, yet Pittsburgh Steelers passer Justin Fields was an option in 2024. 

According to ESPN’s Brooke Pryor, the Vikings were an option in the Fields trade sweepstakes, which resulted in Fields to Pittsburgh for a conditional 6th-Round draft pick. “Chicago, intending to move the three-year starter as it prepared to select a quarterback with the No. 1 pick in April’s draft, was willing to give Fields some say in his next destination. The Steelers were one of four teams on Fields’ radar prior to the start of free agency, along with the Vikings, Raiders and Falcons, a source familiar with Fields’ thinking said,” Pryor wrote late last week.

Had a Vikings-Bears trade come to fruition, Fields probably would’ve been nominated for a depth assignment or a patchover role.

Two years ago, Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell told Pro Football Talk, “I really do believe having attempted to play quarterback in this league myself and not ultimately achieving that goal because of the fact I wasn’t accurate enough as a quarterback. I think the number one for me now that I look at veteran quarterbacks, rookie quarterbacks, I evaluate them throughout any process is they need to be naturally accurate.”

Fields is one of the NFL’s least accurate starting quarterbacks, so the idea of Minnesota tossing a QB1 emblem on his chest was always unlikely. Partnering Fields with a soon-to-be rookie quarterback from the draft, however, could’ve made sense. What’s more, Minnesota may have experienced a problem hopping over the NFC North hurdle. A rival trade tax may have been in play.

Rumor: The Patriots want more than three 1st-Round picks for their No. 3 overall pick.

Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports.

If Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah wishes to do business with the New England Patriots, a club holding the draft’s third overall pick, the price is allegedly becoming more outrageous, almost by the day.

Tom Curran of NBC Sports Boston explained this week, “I keep circling back to it’s going to be three 1st-Round picks, meaning Minnesota at No. 11 and 23 — and their 1st-Round pick next year. From what I’m hearing, it’s going to take a lot more than that for the Patriots to be moved off their spot.”

Should Minnesota climb to New England’s spot, Drake Maye of North Carolina would become the expected target, a prospect not quite deemed as “generational” as USC’s Caleb Williams but one with a magnificent upside nevertheless.

“Because they, as a team collectively, understand as an opportunity what these three quarterbacks represent at the top of the draft,” Curran added about the Patriots’ trade intentions.

One must wonder how expensive is too expensive for Maye — or Jayden Daniels or J.J. McCarthy. This could also be pre-draft jostling by the Patriots to drive up the price.

Rumor: The Vikings could play the Houston Texans in London this season.

Danielle Hunter
Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports.

SKOR North’s Declan Goff said this week on the Mackey and Judd Show, “I was told it’s not the Colts. I’ll say it is another team in their division, though. I’ve heard it is a team that is in that division that they have penciled in so far. Sources telling me that is an AFC team. Date TBD, but I did hear from a good source that it is an AFC South team.”

That seems like code for the Texans.

This one is just a theory for now. And if it’s Houston, the Vikings will see Danielle Hunter, Stefon Diggs, Case Keenum, and Kris Boyd across the pond.

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.