Minnesota Vikings: Five players whose stock is on the rise

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Nov 30, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen (19) celebrates his touchdown during the first quarter against the Carolina Panthers at TCF Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

2. Adam Thielen

If you want to know what Norv Turner thinks about the Adam Thielen vs. Cordarrelle Patterson debate, just look at the snap counts from Sunday’s game against San Diego.

After Charles Johnson went out with an injury, Turner had a choice of Thielen or Patterson as his next man up.

Though Patterson did get on the field in certain packages, mostly heavy sets, Thielen ended up getting twice as many snaps in the game.

Thielen was targeted only four times (in a game where Adrian Peterson’s running was featured) and caught two balls for 16 yards including an 11-yarder for a first down on a well-executed slant.

On this play, Thielen beats his man off the line and puts himself in position where Bridgewater can easily hit him for the first down. It’s all in the technique including the way he slaps the defender’s arm away.

Little plays like that are why Thielen was on the field for 28 snaps against San Diego and Patterson was only out there for 14.

And considering the way Charles Johnson has been playing, I wouldn’t mind seeing Thielen on the field more even when Johnson isn’t injured.

Right now you could argue that Thielen is the Vikings’ third-best receiver behind Mike Wallace and Jarius Wright.

And Cordarrelle Patterson is a distant fifth. But at least he’s good on jet sweeps.

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