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 June 12th 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.
Rumor: Baker Mayfield could eventually land with the Vikings.
This rumor came from Dan Graziano of ESPN.
He reportedly made calls to gauge teams’ interest in Mayfield, and the Vikings, Saints, and Lions were the franchises he settled on for landing spots.
To be clear, Mayfield-to-Vikings would be a 2023 transaction, not a summer trade involving Kirk Cousins. The theory, if it comes to fruition at all, would mean Cousins floundered under the tutelage of new head coach Kevin O’Connell in 2022. Then, the team would jettison Cousins elsewhere — with his consent via the no-trade clause — and Minnesota would sign on for the Mayfield era.
Per Graziano, this would be a Jameis Winston-like move currently sponsored by the Saints.
Mayfield to Minnesota is unlikely, generally speaking, but the Graziano theory does make sense if the Vikings finish in the ballpark of 8-9 again.
However, Kwesi Adofo-Mensah would likely just draft a rookie quarterback from the robust 2023 draft class.
Rumor: Ndamukong Suh is on the Vikings free-agent radar.
This one was created by Bleacher Report in an article detailing “one move every team needs to make” before the 2022 regular season begins.
Since March, the Vikings were whispered as a new home for Akiem Hicks, a defensive lineman who terrorized Minnesota for years. Hicks had ties to Vikings defensive boss Ed Donatell, so Hicks-to-Vikings held some weight.
Alas, Hicks signed with Suh’s old team, the Buccaneers, leaving Suh “out in the cold” for a 2022 destination.
If the Vikings are not sold on Armon Watts up front for the defense, exploring a Suh free-agent addition adds up. Minnesota could afford him with its existing cap space.
Rumor: Justin Jefferson’s next contract will set the market for WRs.
About a dozen wide receivers got paid this offseason in bombastic fashion.
Extension chatter pertaining to Jefferson will heat up next spring, and when it does, Jefferson’s new deal will indeed “set the market.” He could earn $35 million per season.
Of course, if he produces a “down year,” enthusiasm for a gargantuan deal will dwindle. But does anyone believe Jefferson will struggle with an offense-first head coach?
Jefferson’s extension won’t formally kick in until 2025, but terms of the deal will begin negotiation soon. And they’ll be massive for Jefferson, rest assured.
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).