VikingsTerritory’s Purple Rumor Mill is a two-day chronicle each week. All the week’s rumors are lassoed and plopped in two spots — articles on Saturday and Sunday — for review. Today is the December 25th edition.
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.
Purple Rumor Mill: Adam Thielen in the Offseason, GB in the Postseason, All the Records
Rumor: The Vikings will have to do something with Adam Thielen’s contract in 2023.
This is a controversy coming to Vikings-themed water-cooler office chats near you. The Vikings owe Thielen about $20 million in 2023 but have an opt-out option after the 2022 season, with a $16.5 million dead cap penalty. It is unlikely that general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah will put that cap hit on the books.
So, yes, something must be done — perhaps approaching Thielen for an honest-to-goodness paycut. It could happen. Otherwise, the Vikings will employ a handsome-paid WR3 as Thielen’s days as a WR2 are suddenly kaput. He isn’t as productive as years from 2016 to 2021. This is what happens to players around this age, especially wide receivers.
Thielen could also retire, so watch for that.
Rumor: The Packers can (or will?) run the table and get in the postseason.
The Packers must beat the Vikings on New Year’s Day, the Detroit Lions after that, and then they’ll dance into the postseason — if the Washington Commanders lose a game to the Cleveland Browns or Dallas Cowboys.
Green Bay has won three straight after bottoming out against the Philadelphia Eagles on November 27th. And because they’re the Packers, everything needed to provide a favorable playoff path has happened.
Keep an eye on the Packers, too, as they could play the Vikings in Round 1 of the postseason. Here’s the scenario.
Rumor: The Vikings set about half a dozen records against the Giants on Christmas Eve.
This is true and was adeptly described by AJ Mansour after Vikings-Giants:
- Dalvin Cook passed Chuck Foreman today on the Vikings all-time rushing list, moving into third place with 5,821 rushing yards (Peterson leads with 11,747).
- Justin Jefferson passed Randy Moss for the most receiving yards in a single season, with 1,756 yards.
- Jefferson moved into the Top 10 for most receiving yards in a single season (Calvin Johnson tops with 1,964).
- T.J. Hockenson snatched 13 receptions, the most in franchise history for a tight end in a single game.
- Greg Joseph hit a 61-yard game-winning field goal to win the game, breaking his own franchise record of 56 yards for the longest kick in regular season play.
- The Vikings got their 11th win by one score, a new NFL single-season record.
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 Sally from Minneapolis. His Viking fandom dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).