Noteworthy Vikings Moment No. 2
Minnesota says goodbye to Adam Thielen, Eric Kendricks, and Dalvin Cook
Tough decisions have to be made by every NFL team each offseason, and earlier this year, the Vikings wound up moving on from a trio of players who were part of the team's core for the last handful of seasons.
Minnesota began by releasing longtime linebacker Eric Kendricks after eight years with the franchise. Kendricks made an immediate impact as a rookie in 2015, and he went on to finish with at least 100 tackles in seven of his eight seasons with the Vikings.
Next to go was Adam Thielen. It was a day that some Vikings fans didn't think was going to happen anytime soon. But the team and the Detroit Lakes, Minnesota native decided to go their separate ways shortly before free agency began in March.
Thielen's journey with the Vikings was something straight out of a Disney movie. He fought his way onto Minnesota's practice squad as an undrafted rookie in 2013, then he shifted to the active roster as a special teamer, after that, he made the most of some more offensive snaps in 2015 and 2016, and then by 2017, he and Stefon Diggs formed one of the best wide receiver duos in the entire NFL.
The final big departure during the Vikings' 2023 offseason was when the team said goodbye to running back Dalvin Cook.
Cook battled injuries during his first two years with Minnesota, but by year three, he had emerged as one of the best running backs in the league. He was only with the Vikings for six seasons, but he left the team with the third-most career rushing yards in franchise history.
All three wound up with new teams before the start of the 2023 season, and they all looked odd when they took the field for the first time this year in a uniform that wasn't purple and gold.