The Minnesota Vikings and Green Bay Packers are bitter rivals and, for obvious reasons, rarely do business. Yes, Brett Favre played two seasons with the Vikings after 16 years in Green Bay, but that was the last thing the Packers wanted and the quarterback had to do plenty of work to make sure he ended up in purple.
Nonetheless, it appears Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst, the son of former Gophers coach John Gutekunst, decided to pick up the phone and call Vikings GM Rick Spielman on Thursday night during the first round of the NFL draft.
Accoding to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, the Packers desire to land Utah State quarterback Jordan Love was so great that they reached out to the Vikings, who owned picks No. 22 and 25. If there were trade talks, they did not get far and the Packers ended up working a deal with Miami to move from pick No. 30 to 26 so they could select Love and begin the process of preparing him to replace Aaron Rodgers.
The Vikings, meanwhile, used their first selection on LSU wide receiver Justin Jefferson and then made a trade with San Francisco, sending the 25th pick to the 49ers for three selections, including the 31st in the opening round. Minnesota used that pick on TCU cornerback Jeff Gladney.
Gutekunst said he wasn’t planning to target a quarterback and thought Love would be gone in the teens, according to Peter King of NBC Sports, but the Packers decided to trade up to get the QB when he fell into the 20s and Gutekunst heard that another team was trying to move up from the second round to get Love.
For those wondering, I did find one occasion in which the Vikings and Packers did business during a draft. However, it was a long way from the first round. In a 2008 deal, the Vikings sent a fifth-round pick (guard Breno Giacomini taken at No. 150) and a 2008 seventh-round pick (QB Matt Flynn taken at No. 209) to Green Bay for a 2008 fifth-round selection (QB John David Booty taken at No. 137).
How much did the Packers want Jordan Love? As they made their calls about a first-round trade up, they reached out to divisional rival Minnesota, which had the 22nd and 25th picks. Sounds like they wouldn't be denied in getting the QB.
— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) April 27, 2020