Hunter, Hockenson Denied AP All-Pro but Vikings Long Snapper Secures Spot

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Philadelphia Eagles
Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

In today’s announcement of the AP All-Pro NFL 1st and 2nd teams, only one player from the Minnesota Vikings secured a spot and it’s likely a lot of more casual fans have no idea who he is. But congratulations to long snapper Andrew DePaola, who was named a Special Teams All-Pro (2nd Team) Friday around noon.

Notably, however, players like (EDGE) Danielle Hunter and (TE) TJ Hockenson were surprising snubs.

Danielle Hunter Snubbed in AP All-Pro Selections

Coming off the best season of his career, Danielle Hunter found out today he wasn’t selected to an All-Pro team, this comes as a major disappointment and shocker to most people. Hunter was 5th in the league in sacks this season, with 16.5, the most of his career.

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Players like Myles Garett, TJ Watt, Micah Parsons and Max Crosby were all selected over Hunter. Hunter, who played in all 17 games this season, will be a free agent in the offseason and will be one of GM Kwesi Adofo Mensah’s main priorities; right up there with Kirk Cousins and Justin Jefferson.

Last offseason, the Vikings chose to keep Hunter on a one year deal worth up to $20 Million. He has said that staying with Minnesota is the goal, calling it “an organization that I love”. Can the front office and Danielle’s camp find a middle ground this offseason? We’ll find that out soon enough.

TJ Hockenson Snubbed too

TJ Hockenson played a huge role in the Vikings offense all season, he played in 15 games before he was injured late vs the Detroit Lions on December 24th. His 95 catches ranked 2nd among tight ends, his 960 yards 4th and his 5 touchdowns tied for 3rd.

Missing the last two games was (apparently) crucial, given he would have had a real shot at being the league leader in many of these categories. George Kittle nabbed the 1st Team selection, with 1,020 yards and 6 touchdowns, on 65 receptions. Rookie, Sam Laporta was named to the second team.

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Hockenson suffered injuries to both his ACL, and MCL and could force him to miss the beginning of the 2024 season. He signed a 4 year extension with the Vikings last season and will be key piece to this Vikings offense going forward.

Long Snapper Andrew DePaola Named To 2nd Team

Andrew DePaola Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears
Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Andrew DePaola stands as the sole Vikings player chosen for an AP All-Pro team this season. Impressively, this marks his second consecutive selection to the All-Pro team. In the previous season, he earned a spot on the first team, along with a Pro Bowl selection.

Following his outstanding performance last season, he secured a three-year extension with the Vikings during the last offseason. This season, DePaola receives recognition with a nod to the second team, positioning him as a probable contender for this year’s Pro Bowl once again.

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