5 receivers that can replace Adam Thielen for the Vikings in 2023

(Photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) DeAndre Hopkins
(Photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) DeAndre Hopkins /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) DeAndre Hopkins /

DeAndre Hopkins

If the Vikings want to go into the trade market, they’re going to go big game hunting. The problem is that teams are going to hold onto their top assets with the increase in value at the receiver position. But if there’s one name that makes sense, it’s DeAndre Hopkins.

Hopkins is coming off of back-to-back down seasons as his last 1,000-yard campaign came in 2020. Before that, Hopkins was a model of consistency posting at least 1,000 yards in six of his first eight seasons in the NFL.

You could also talk yourself into Hopkins based in the circumstances surrounding last season. Hopkins was suspended for the first six games of the year due after violating the league’s performance-enhancing drugs policy, his head coach was consistently on the hot seat and Kyler Murray’s ACL injury didn’t help matters at the end of the year. Through it all, Hopkins posted 1.98 yards per route run, which isn’t far off from his 2.25 yards clip from 2020.

At 30 years old, there is a chance that Hopkins could be on the same decline that Thielen had been on prior to his release. But with the Cardinals making their intention to trade Hopkins known, the Vikings would be wise to at least make the call.