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Why Did Stefon Diggs Force His Way Out of Minnesota?

Tanishka Mhaskar
March 17, 2020
Photo: Charles Curtis, ForTheWin

After a whirlwind of drama, Stefon Diggs is finally gone. It seems like it was only a week ago that he caught the Minnesota Miracle, and he was the Vikings’ hero. Many wonder how we got here from such a “good” time. We’ll never really know why Diggs did a complete 180 on this team, but there sure are a lot of theories out there.

To the outsider, it seemed as if Stefon Diggs had everything in Minnesota. He had a new contract, he played alongside his best friend, and contributed to one of the most supportive locker rooms in the NFL. 

It’s overblown to say that Diggs simply didn’t like QB Kirk Cousins because he was happy when the offense was all about him and Adam Thielen in 2018 under OC John DeFilippo.

Of course, when Gary Kubiak and co. came to Minnesota to implement the zone blocking, run first scheme, the offense took a huge leap. Most were happy about that, but Diggs might not have been. 

On #92Noon, Vikings broadcaster Paul Allen’s podcast, he spoke of the week after the Vikings loss at Soldier Field when Diggs’ antics first began. He didn’t show up to practice after the Vikings lost to the Bears in a disheartening 16-6 game. That day, after practice HC Mike Zimmer gave his team a speech in the most ‘subtle’ way possible. 

He said, “Someone isn’t here. F**k him. He left you, and we are moving on without him. So that’s how it works” 

Zimmer and Diggs had such a strong relationship for years, so you would have to assume that this was broiling for a long time. The whole situation rubbed people the wrong way within the organization. To the people with the organization, it was as if Diggs left his alleged friends and people he counted on in the fire.  

“The confused nature of the team that day and the next day when Stef returned, something I’ll never forget. Heads were spinning. Eyes were glazed over. Zimmer’s impassioned speech drew the line in the sand,” said Allen.

Apparently, Diggs requested a trade then, but Zimmer was adamant that the team would not trade Diggs. He made it clear that there would be a steep fine every day he wasn’t here. Diggs came back two days later and was fined $200k. 

For a team with the roster that Minnesota had in 2019, it made sense to not trade the WR In a contending season. 

Now, Diggs is gone and the Vikings got a huge haul for the coveted WR. It’s always painful to lose a fan favorite, especially in the bitter way it ended, but if Minnesota has been through Randy Moss and Adrian Peterson, they will get through Diggs.

It’s time for a new beginning. For everyone.

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