NFL Takes, TooAthletic Takes

After Antonio Brown lasted about as long with the New England Patriots as team owner Robert Kraft spends in massage parlor, rumors are that Bill Belichick might want to give his Rob Gronkowski-less offense a boost … And the name of the player at the center of many of these rumors is another unhappy wide receiver, Stefon Diggs of the Minnesota Vikings.

“I said there’s truth to all rumors,” said Stefon Diggs when asked by reporters if he had requested a trade out of Minnesota.  The rumors started after offensive players on the Vikings described a sinking ship due in large part to the poor play of quarterback Kirk Cousins, who doesn’t seem to have earned the trust of the coaching staff.  Cousins, who’s three-year fully guaranteed free agent contract is almost halfway completed, is being criticized for not throwing the ball down the field more and missing wide open receivers when he does.

A trade would cause a domino effect on the Patriots’ roster since Diggs is in the second year of a five-year $72 Million contract he signed prior to the start of last season, with the 25-year-old former Maryland Terrapins receiver making nearly $9 Million in base salary this year; which would be a tough addition for almost any team to make midseason.

With the Minnesota Vikings sitting at the bottom of the NFC North with a 2-2 record, the best way for the Patriots to even consider prying Diggs out of his Purple uniform is to see the team go into the tank.  Only there, perhaps, will the team be more open to taking the salary cap hit that would accompany traded one of their best offensive players.  In fact as recently as Wednesday, worked leaked out of the Vikings front office that Diggs would not be traded to New England, or any other team.  Which means the team is accepting the actions of a player who didn’t show up at practice this week and who wasn’t listed on the team’s injury report.

Feelings can change, just ask Stefon Diggs, who never thought things would be this bad when he signed his extension.  Perceptions can change, just ask the Minnesota Vikings, who really thought Kirk Cousins was the answer at quarterback when they gave him a fully guaranteed $84 Million contract.  Will the trade happen this week, most likely not; but the league’s trading deadline is not until October 30th, so both sides have time to let more of the season unfold.

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