Behind Scenes, Vikings Readily Fielding Flood of Trade Offers for Key Players

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Carolina Panthers
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings are 2-4 on the season; a season that rides on a Monday night victory this week over the San Francisco 49ers. But, that isn’t stopping the front office from readily taking phone calls with trade offers for premier, household name players.

Minnesota Vikings appear open for business at trade deadline

Related: Vikings Have No Plans to Trade Kirk Cousins but Continue to Take Calls on Others

Even after a victory on Sunday over the Bears, Vikings GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah is signaling to approaching teams that they are open for business, as sellers, approaching the NFL trade deadline on October 31.

Local insiders Darren “Doogie” Wolfson and Judd Zulgad both have very reliable sources telling them the same thing, as they reported on SKOR North’s “MN Sports w/Mackey & Judd” Tuesday.

Mackey: “What’s your read on [how the Vikings are approaching the trade deadline]?”

Wolfson: “Well, my read is, based on a text message I literally just got from an AFC front office executive, getting the sense that the Vikings are very much, even after last Sunday’s win, open for business heading into the trade deadline on October 31.”

SKOR North – MN Sports w/Mackey & Judd

Vibes are good at TCO Performance Center, regardless of uncertainty

In his next breath, Wolfson goes on to say that vibes around TCO Performance Center remain upbeat. That, even with a 2-4 start and all sorts of questions surrounding the franchise from the outside, Minnesota’s locker room chemistry remains strong and there seems to be very little friction palpable within the organization.

But there’s no doubt teams across the league are very interested in the wide variety of individual talent the Vikings will have up for grabs, should Kwesi really hit the sell button any time in the next two weeks.

Both Doogie and Judd confirm that Kwesi’s bat phone is ringing off the hook and Vikings front office members are actively taking offers for players like Danielle Hunter, Jordan Hicks, Harrison Smith, Ezra Cleveland and others.

Judd: “I’m hearing the same thing, though. I’m hearing the phone calls, and it’s not just us — it’s been reported nationally as well — the phone calls are coming in fast and furious from teams who are curious to see if the Vikings are going to be a seller.”

Wolfson: “Judd, that’s what I’m hearing, more than the Vikings being proactive, making phone calls, it’s more them receiving phone calls. Now, maybe it shifts if the Niners win by double digits on Monday night. Then, you’re at 2-5. Does that change things before the Green Bay game, two days before the trade deadline? But my understanding is, it’s the Vikings way more receiving phone calls, certainly listening, but not being super proactive right now.”

SKOR North – MN Sports w/Mackey & Judd

Kwesi can prepare for trades but will he be allowed to execute them?

Without a doubt, Kwesi Adofo-Mensah is preparing to sell veterans at the trade deadline, should he get worthy offers for the right players. But, I remain adamant that the Wilfs’ desire to win and make money will trump any rebuilding plans their young GM might have.

I’d be shocked, should Minnesota pull out an upset over the Niners on Monday night, if there was a trade announced involving key pieces of their 2023-24 team. Let’s face it, both the offense and defense seem to be hanging on for dear life, most weeks.

Trading a Danielle Hunter, after Marcus Davenport was reported as out for 4-6 weeks, would eliminate any chance the defense has at putting regular pressure on quarterbacks, going forward.

Related: Jaguars Want Danielle Hunter but May Lack Draft Capital Needed to Entice Vikings

Hunter leads the team in sacks (8.0), tackles for loss (11) and QB hits (7). Nobody else on the roster has more than 3.0 (H. Smith), 3 (H. Smith), and 5 (3 tied) in each respective category. But Danielle isn’t the only defensive subtraction that would severely hinder the team’s chances of winning games, something head coach, Kevin O’Connell all but admitted this week.

Most of the other rumored trade candidates — including Harrison Smith, Jordan Hicks and Harrison Phillips — would be devastating to Minnesota’s defensive production the rest of this season. Even on offense, losing KJ Osborn or Ezra Cleveland would be devastating to a depth chart already riddled with injuries.

For many players, it’s win or be traded

So, if you are a Minnesota Vikings player reading this blog, and you want to keep your locker room together and playoff hopes alive, your only option is to win your next two games and force your GM to choose future priorities over winning now.

Even then, Kwesi would have to convince a Wilf ownership group — with an insatiable appetite to max out revenue on a yearly basis, no matter the team’s realistic championship aspirations — to buy-in on selling out, which would be, by far, the most difficult step of Kwesi shifting the franchise focus to the future.

But one more loss, vs either the 49ers or Packers, prior to the trade deadline, and I’d imagine Kwesie will be given the full go-ahead to sell sell sell.

Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan

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