It Looks Like Adam Thielen and the Vikings are Heading for a Split (UPDATE: He’s Gone)

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It Looks Like Adam Thielen and the Vikings are Heading for a Split (UPDATE: He’s Gone)

Chicago Bears, NFL

The NFC North is lining up for some sweeping changes.

In Green Bay, Aaron Rodgers is on the brink of skipping town for New York. The Lions have two top 20 picks in the first round (and are riding the wave of being the team that kept the Packers out of the playoffs last year). And then there are the Bears, who have the first overall pick, bundles of cap space, and tremendous vibes going into the start of the new league year.

As for the Vikings, ESPN’s Adam Schefter hears that Minnesota could be cutting ties with wide receiver Adam Thielen. On Thursday, it became possible the long-time Vikings wideout could be on his way out:

And today, it’s happening:

Minnesota is $15,780,607 over the cap, per OTC’s projections. Only the Rams ($16.020M), Cowboys ($16.070M), Bills ($19.184M), Saints ($25.272M), and Buccaneers ($49.061M) are in worst spots than the Vikings in terms of cap health. As for Thielen, cutting him could create $6.417 million in cap space (although, it’ll come with a $13.55M dead money hit). However, a post-June 1 designation would clear $13.417 million in cap space at the cost of a $6.5 million dead cap hit. That might be the path Minnesota takes on the soon-to-be 33-year-old receiver if they can’t agree to a contract restructuring.

I’ll admit that part of me has an interest in Thielen being a Bears target if he hits the market.

Thielen is a two-time Pro Bowler, which looks good on the résumé. He is also not too far removed from putting up 24 touchdowns in 28 games from 2020-21. He even put up a respectable 70-catch, 716-yard, 6-touchdown season last year. But Thielen hasn’t been a Pro Bowl player since 2018. That year also happens to represent his most recent 1,000-yard receiving season. And with Thielen entering his age 33 season in 2023, I struggle to see him as an ideal fit — even for a receiver-needy team like Chicago. It is tough to see an older player whose numbers appear to be on the decline as the right fit. This isn’t to say Thielen can’t be a productive player for the Vikings. Or even another team that snags him if he leaves Minnesota. However, Thielen and the Bears don’t look like an ideal fit.

Don’t get me wrong. I realize the Bears need receiver help. It’s just that I don’t think Thielen is it.

But, hey, if his departure makes the Vikings marginally weaker in 2023, then I’m all for saying goodbye.

Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.