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Exit plan: Vikings’ Stefon Diggs announces “it’s time for a new beginning”

Stefon Diggs’ activity on Twitter and Instagram this offseason has left many speculating that the wide receiver would like to get out of Minnesota, while others remain sure Diggs’ cryptic messages are either about something in his personal life or him just playing around.

But Diggs’ tweets on Monday made it clear the veteran isn’t playing around and that he wants the Vikings to move him. The below tweet from the 26-year-old and his response provide an indication of Diggs’ unhappiness in purple.

Every time Stefon Diggs gets (upset) he posts some ominous tweet about new beginnings or change. Then we get report “Minnesota has no intention of trading Diggs” and he posts himself in Vikings uniform hugging a teammate or something. Relax Pats fans, he’s just a drama queen.

— ZA (@zack_a9) March 16, 2020

Diggs’ message about “it’s time for a new beginning,” came hours after it was reported the Vikings had agreed to a two-year, $66 million contract extension with quarterback Kirk Cousins that will run through the 2022 season.

Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times tweeted on Monday that there was interest from the Seahawks in a potential Diggs deal. The Vikings dealt disgruntled wide receiver Percy Harvin to Seattle in 2013.

Diggs agreed to a five-year, $72 million contract extension with the Vikings in July that guaranteed him $40 million and will run through 2023. Diggs’ decision to skip a portion of the Vikings’ offseason workouts last spring was the first indication something might be wrong. But Diggs’ level of unhappiness became clear when he skipped a day of team meetings and a day of practice after the Vikings’ loss at Chicago in Week 4. Diggs was fined more than $200,000 for his absences.

While many thought Diggs was unhappy with Cousins, an NFL source said his problem was more with the Vikings’ offense than anything and that he and the quarterback had a good relationship. Playing in his first season in Gary Kubiak’s offense, Diggs had 63 receptions for 1,130 yards and six touchdowns in 15 games. This came after a 2018 season in which Diggs caught 102 passes for 1,021 yards and nine touchdowns in 15 games.

Diggs’ decline in receptions and touchdowns came during a season in which the Vikings’ other top receiver, Adam Thielen, missed six games because of injury.

Vikings general manager Rick Spielman, asked about Diggs’ at the NFL Scouting Combine in February, said: “Stefon last year had probably his most productive year. And he’s a young receiver we just extended [in July 2018]. He’s not only a major part of our offense and a major part of our organization winning games, but he also does a lot of things for this organization off the field as well. There’s no reason – the rumors, or whatever you’re talking about – to anticipate that Stefon Diggs is not going to be a Minnesota Viking. When you have some of the offensive talent that we have, with him and Thielen together, with Rudy (Kyle Rudolph) and Irv Smith, with Dalvin Cook and (Alexander) Mattison, we have a pretty good support cast around our quarterback.”

Spielman’s comments came as no surprise because he clearly wasn’t going to announce that Diggs had demanded a trade and give up valuable leverage. But with the NFL’s “legal tampering” period for free agents starting Monday, and the new league year set to open on Wednesday, it appears as if Diggs made it official: He wants out of Minnesota.

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vikings

Previous Story Now franchise tagged, what are Vikings’ options with Anthony Harris? Next Story Zulgad: Can Kirk Cousins save Mike Zimmer and Rick Spielman’s jobs?