Minnesota Vikings Trade Deadline Previewby Mike Fanelli October 27, 2021 1 comment
Coming off their bye week, the Minnesota Vikings have a 3-3 record after back-to-back victories over the Detroit Lions and Carolina Panthers. However, whether the Viking make the playoffs this season or not will be determined over the next four weeks. The Vikings’ next four opponents are the Dallas Cowboys, Baltimore Ravens, Los Angeles Chargers, and Green Bay Packers. While they currently hold the last playoff spot in the NFC, if the Vikings want to make the postseason, they will need to make some moves between now and the November 2 trade deadline.
Make sure to check out all of our other NFL Trade Deadline Previews.
The Vikings Current Status
Current Record: 3-3
Division Standings: Second in the NFC North
In the Playoff Picture: Yes
Buyers or Sellers: Buyers
Current NFL Draft Slot: 19th Overall
Potential Trade #1: 2022 fifth and sixth-round picks to the Kansas City Chiefs for Laurent Duvernay-Tardif
Despite their 3-4 record, the Chiefs will be buyers at the trade deadline. However, one name that could be on the move is Duvernay-Tardif. After opting out of the 2020 season to help fight Covid-19 in Canada, Duvernay-Tardif hasn’t played this season. Currently, 2021 sixth-round pick Trey Smith has earned the starting right guard spot, forcing Duvernay-Tardif to the bench. However, Duvernay-Tardif has plenty of starting experience and deserves a starting role. With Duvernay-Tardif heading towards free agency at the end of the season, the Chiefs would be wise to see what they can get in return for the eight-year veteran.
Over the last several years, the Vikings have invested in their offensive line. They used a 2019 first-round pick on center Garrett Bradbury and a 2020 second-round pick on left guard Ezra Cleveland. This offseason, the Vikings used their first-round pick on left tackle Christian Darrisaw. They also signed right tackle Brian O’Neill to a five-year $92.5 million contract, securing their two tackle spots for the next several years. While the Vikings used a third-round pick on Wyatt Davis, he isn’t ready for a starting role. Instead, 2019 sixth-round pick Oli Udoh is starting at right guard. The problem is Udoh has seven penalties this season. At the cost of two late-round draft picks, the Vikings can solidify their offensive line with the addition of Duvernay-Tardif.
Potential Trade #2: 2022 fifth-round pick to the Denver Broncos for Kyle Fuller
In the offseason, the Broncos made several moves to their secondary, using their first-round pick on Patrick Surtain II after signing Ronald Darby and Fuller in free agency. However, Fuller has struggled in Denver this season and got benched a few weeks back. Reports are Denver will move Fuller before Tuesday’s trade deadline. The only question left is where do they send him. With Darby, Surtain, and Bryce Callahan locked in as the starting trio and Michael Ojemudia coming off of injured reserve in the coming weeks, the Broncos have no reason to hold onto Fuller. Even at the price of a fifth-round pick, the Broncos will be happy to part ways with the veteran cornerback.
Much like the Broncos, the Vikings made several moves this offseason to improve their secondary. The headline move was signing former Arizona Cardinal star Patrick Peterson. However, the Vikings also added Mackensie Alexander and Bashaud Breeland to bolster their cornerback unit. Unfortunately, the Vikings placed Peterson on injured reserve last week with a hamstring injury, knocking him out for the next couple of games. Over the next four weeks, the Vikings will face several star wide receivers, including Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb, Davante Adams, Marquise Brown, Keenan Allen, and Mike Williams. Adding a veteran cornerback with pro bowl experience at a discounted price is a move the Vikings should make.
Potential Trade #3: 2022 fifth-round pick and a conditional 2023 fourth-round pick to the Miami Dolphins for Mike Gesicki
After almost making the playoffs last season, many expected the Dolphins to make the playoffs this year. However, the Dolphins have lost six straight games and have the worst record in the NFL outside of the Detroit Lions. The one bright spot for the Dolphins has been the play of Gesicki. The fourth-year tight end has averaged 5.3 catches for 61 receiving yards per game this season while catching a career-high 72.5 percent of his targets. However, he will be an unrestricted free agent after the season. After using a 2021 third-round pick on tight end Hunter Long, it’s unlikely the Dolphins will hand Gesicki a massive new deal in the offseason. With their season heading down the toilet, the Dolphins should trade Gesicki for some draft capital.
When the team lost Irv Smith Jr. to a season-ending injury in the preseason, the Vikings traded for Chris Herndon. However, Herndon hasn’t filled the void at tight end, playing under 15 percent of the snaps in all but one game this season. While Tyler Conklin has played well as the starter, he is limited in what he can do in the passing game and is a free agent after the season. Adding Gesicki would give the Vikings a mismatch weapon that would thrive as defenses focus on stopping Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen. If the Vikings re-sign Gesicki in the offseason, the 2023 conditional pick would be a fourth-round selection. However, if Gesicki signs elsewhere, the 2023 conditional pick would be a fifth-round selection, making it a win-win for both teams.
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