Stefon Diggs’ frustration with the Vikings’ offense caused him to skip two days of work last season — he paid a steep fine for his absence — and it eventually led to him getting his wish to be traded. But Diggs’ new quarterback, Josh Allen, seems to think his new No. 1 wide receiver caused more issues in Minnesota than he did.
Allen, the Buffalo Bills quarterback, talked to reporters this week after working with Diggs and others in Florida.
“It was very, very awesome to see just the amount of detail (Diggs) puts into his craft, how communicative he was, how willing he was to learn,” Allen said. “And he wasn’t there for himself. He was there for the betterment of the team and wanted to hang out with the guys and wanted to learn and get to know the guys and I thought that was pretty special. You hear all these crazy stories in the media and I think he’s had a bad rep where he was at.”
Crazy stories? Diggs’ decision to skip Monday meetings and a Wednesday practice after a Week 4 loss in Chicago last season, was a definite issue and Diggs was fined more than $200,000 for that two-day absence. This didn’t lead to “crazy stories in the media” about Diggs, but rather conversations about why he decided to stay away. Just as there had been conversations about Diggs’ decision to skip much of the Vikings’ voluntary workouts last offseason, and also what he was possibly saying with the numerous cryptic tweets he put out after the season.
But for Allen to believe that there were crazy stories about Diggs, or that he had a bad rep with the Vikings, is way off base. As far as disgruntled wide receivers go, Diggs isn’t anywhere near the top of the list and the fact that he was likely disgruntled because of how much the Vikings wanted to focus on the run made sense. The Vikings got a nice return for Diggs when they sent him to the Bills for four draft picks in March, but there is no doubt they will miss a 2015 fifth-round pick who turned himself into one of the NFL’s best wide receivers.
“I’ll tell you, this man loves to work,” Allen said of Diggs. “He loves to get on the field and run routes and talk to the guys and explain how he’s running routes and explain what works for him to these young cats.”
That sounds like Diggs. The veteran is an outstanding route runner and combines that with elite talent. He’s also is a competitor who can get frustrated when things don’t go well. But one thing Diggs wasn’t during his time with the Vikings was a guy who developed a bad reputation.