The Minnesota Vikings were this close to nabbing Justin Fields in the NFL Draft, but they decided it ultimately wasn’t worth it.
Sitting at No.14 in the first round of the NFL Draft, the Vikings were eyeing a long-term replacement for Kirk Cousins. Apparently, many in Minnesota clamored for that replacement to be Justin Fields, but it wasn’t enough to get the franchise on board. Fields’ known case of epilepsy was reportedly one of several reasons the Vikings didn’t try harder to pick up the Ohio State quarterback.
According to ESPN’s Courtney Cronin, the Vikings were set to draft Fields with their first-round selection before the Chicago Bears traded up to take him at No. 11.
Cronin reports, “The Vikings were stunned, and this one really stung. They wanted one of the top quarterbacks, but they weren’t desperate enough to give up that kind of draft capital for a player who would be sitting behind Cousins for at least a year.”
Vikings briefly considered trading up for Justin Fields in the NFL Draft
As one of the top quarterback prospects in the draft, Fields dominated college football the last two seasons with 5,373 yards and 63 touchdown passes against nine interceptions. He was the fourth quarterback selected overall, after Trevor Lawrence went to Jacksonville, Zach Wilson went to the New York Jets, and Trey Lance went to San Francisco.
Still, the Vikings seem content with their third-round quarterback pick, Kellen Mond. Had they brought on Fields, that would have all but ensured Kirk Cousins’ exit after his current two season contract, but taking Mond keeps Minnesota’s options open without toppling the quarterback pecking order. Also, by not trading up for Fields, the Vikings got to round out their squad with offensive tackle Christian Darrisaw and guard Wyatt Davis, not to mention they still have a first round pick in 2022.
The Vikings will just have to put up with playing against Fields in Chicago for the foreseeable future. In another universe – another mock draft, perhaps – things could have been different.