Thielen is expected to restructure his contract with the Vikings on Friday, Chad Graff of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: Thielen's restructure is expected to lower his 2022 cap hit, possibly by converting a portion of his salary to a signing bonus. The veteran wideout is recovering from ankle surgery undergone late December, but is expected to be ready for spring workouts. By all accounts, Thielen is primed to play out his age-32 season in Minnesota as the No. 2 wideout alongside Justin Jefferson, and his restructured deal could make it easier for the team to maneuver in free agency.
Mar 18, 2022 7:29 AM EST
Thielen expects to be ready for spring workouts after Dec. 28 ankle surgery, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. "It's a pretty easy recovery, a few more weeks here and I should be feeling back to normal," he said.
Analysis: Thielen missed two games with an ankle injury and returned in Week 16, but hurt the ankle again which led to surgery and caused him to miss the final two games. He finished the season with 67 receptions for 726 yards and ten touchdowns. While he had double-digit touchdowns for a second consecutive season, he had a career low 10.8 yards per reception. Signed through 2024 and with a $16 million cap hit for 2022, Thielen, 31, looks set to remain with the Vikings even if a new GM decides to overhaul the roster and go with younger players.
Jan 11, 2022 12:53 PM EST
Thielen (ankle) was placed on injured reserve Wednesday and is facing an estimated one-month recovery from surgery, according to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network.
Analysis: Thielen might have a chance to play if the Vikings make a deep playoff run, but they currently appear well below 50/50 to even make it past Week 18. K.J. Osborn will be Minnesota's No. 2 receiver to close out the season, with Dede Westbrook likely handling the No. 3 role and Dan Chisena and Ihmir Smith-Marsette providing depth. Meanwhile, Justin Jefferson has seen 39.5 percent of Minnesota's targets the past four weeks, averaging 7.5 catches for 106.0 yards and 0.75 TDs on 12.8 targets.
Dec 29, 2021 9:49 AM EST
Head coach Mike Zimmer said Monday that Thielen is feeling sore following his early departure in Sunday's 30-23 loss to the Rams, but the wideout is hopeful to be back on the field for the Vikings' Week 17 game in Green Bay, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.
Analysis: Minnesota was without two of its top playmakers for most of the Week 16 loss, as running back Dalvin Cook (reserve/COVID-19 list) missed the game entirely, while Thielen played only 23 snaps before leaving after aggravating the left high-ankle sprain that kept him out the previous two contests. Cook will be eligible to rejoin the Vikings on Saturday and is expected to be ready to play in Green Bay the next day, while Thielen's status is murkier, given the recurring nature of his injury. If Thielen is sidelined for the third time in four games, K.J. Osborn and Dede Westbrook would be in store for more reps alongside No. 1 wideout Justin Jefferson.
Dec 27, 2021 5:12 PM EST
Thielen recorded three receptions on three targets for 40 yards in Sunday's 30-23 loss to the Rams.
Analysis: Thielen was active for the first time since Week 14 and caught a 25-yard pass over the middle of the field in the opening quarter. However, he briefly left the game at the end of the first half after suffering an ankle injury, only to briefly return before shutting things down for the rest of the contest. There has been no word regarding the severity of the new issue, though Thielen could be in danger of missing more game action.
Dec 26, 2021 5:52 PM EST
Thielen (ankle) returned to Sunday's game versus the Rams, Chad Graff of The Athletic reports.
Analysis: On the Vikings' second snap from scrimmage after halftime, Thielen made a six-yard catch but went back to the sideline afterward. It appears he's attempting to gut out an ankle injury that he seemingly aggravated in the second quarter and previously forced him to sit out Weeks 14 and 15.
Dec 26, 2021 11:50 AM EST
Thielen left Sunday's game against the Rams due to an ankle injury.
Analysis: At the end of his second catch of the game, Thielen was tackled by his ankles and was visibly frustrated as he got to his feet and assisted off the field by team trainers. There's a chance he aggravated the high left-ankle sprain that forced him to sit out Weeks 14 and 15, and if he's unable to return he'll finish Week 16 with 33 receiving yards.
Dec 26, 2021 11:21 AM EST
Thielen (ankle) is active for Sunday's game against the Rams, Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
Analysis: Sidelined for the past two games with a left high-ankle sprain, Thielen was able to practice twice on a limited basis this week, which was good enough for the Vikings to sign off on him making his return to the lineup. Unless his ankle acts up during the contest, Thielen should be in store for a full snap load while working alongside Justin Jefferson and K.J. Osborn in three-receiver sets.
Dec 26, 2021 8:35 AM EST
Thielen, who is listed as questionable for Sunday's contest with an ankle injury, is expected to play against the Rams, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
Analysis: Thielen was a limited participant in practice all week so it always appeared as if his status was trending in this direction, but it's at least encouraging to hear reassuring news. The 31-year-old missed the last two weeks with a high ankle sprain, but prior to that he had six consecutive games with at least seven targets. Fantasy managers will still want to check whether the star wide receiver will be officially active closer to the 1:00 p.m. ET kickoff.
Dec 25, 2021 8:50 PM EST
The Vikings list Thielen (ankle) as questionable for Sunday's game against the Rams, Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
Analysis: Thielen has missed the Vikings' last two games while recovering from a left high-ankle sprain, but he looks like he'll have a better shot at suiting up this weekend. He was listed as a limited participant on all three of the Vikings' practice reports, after he failed to practice in any capacity in Weeks 14 and 15. Fortunately for those considering Thielen in Week 16 fantasy lineups, the Vikings and Rams kick off among the early wave of Sunday games at 1 p.m. ET. Managers should thus have multiple alternatives ready to go in the event Thielen finds himself on the inactive list for the third week in a row.
Dec 24, 2021 10:35 AM EST
Thielen (ankle) practiced in a limited capacity Thursday, Craig Peters of the Vikings' official site reports.
Analysis: Thielen has put in some work at both a walkthrough Wednesday and a regular session Thursday, potentially positioning him to put an end to a two-game absence and return Sunday versus the Rams. Friday's practice report will indicate whether he has a chance to do so, but the Vikings could use his services this weekend after Dalvin Cook (illness) was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Cook won't be available, so if Thielen is cleared to play on his left ankle, Minnesota's primary options in the passing game would be Thielen, Justin Jefferson and Alexander Mattison.
Dec 23, 2021 3:38 PM EST
Thielen (ankle) was listed as limited on Wednesday's practice estimate.
Analysis: During the portion of the walkthrough open to the media, Thielen didn't take part in any drills, according to Courtney Cronin of ESPN.com. Still, Thielen mixed in at some point during the session to garner a limited tag on Wednesday's report. It marked his first non-DNP listing since suffering a high left-ankle sprain Dec. 5 at Detroit, setting him up for a potential return to action Sunday against the Rams.
Dec 22, 2021 2:48 PM EST
Thielen (ankle) didn't take part in Wednesday's walkthrough, Courtney Cronin of ESPN.com reports.
Analysis: Thielen has yet to practice since sustaining a high left-ankle sprain Dec. 5 in Detroit, missing two contests as a result. In the Vikings' last game Monday at Chicago, he actually was considered a game-time decision, but after putting in a brief pregame workout he was included on the team's list of inactives. Thielen still has a pair of chances to mix into practice this week, but he intimated to Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press on Wednesday that he may not have to get any on-field work to make himself available to Minnesota's offense Sunday versus the Rams.
Dec 22, 2021 12:04 PM EST
Thielen (ankle) is listed as inactive Monday at Chicago.
Analysis: Thielen was considered a game-time decision, despite not practicing since suffering a high left-ankle sprain in a Week 13 loss at Detroit. Per Andrew Krammer of the Minneapolis Star Tribune, Thielen fit in a pregame workout, went to the locker room and then didn't run routes with his teammates, signaling he was poised to miss a second straight contest. With Thielen sidelined and Dede Westbrook (illness) and Dan Chisena (undisclosed) on the reserve/COVID-19 list, Justin Jefferson, K.J. Osborn, Ihmir Smith-Marsette and Myron Mitchell will be the Vikings' options at wide receiver Week 15.
Dec 20, 2021 4:03 PM EST
Thielen (ankle), who is listed as questionable for Monday's game against the Bears, is scheduled to go through a pregame workout before the Vikings decide on his status, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com reports.
Analysis: Official word on whether Thielen is playing or sitting out should arrive no later than 90 minutes before the game's 8:15 p.m. ET kickoff, when Minnesota releases its inactive list. After sitting out the Vikings' Week 14 victory over the Steelers with a low-grade left ankle sprain, Thielen wasn't able to practice in any fashion Thursday through Saturday. While the lack of practice activity would normally hint at an absence, Fowler suggests that Thielen will have a chance to play Monday if he checks out better than expected during his workout.
Dec 20, 2021 2:37 PM EST
Thielen (ankle) is listed as questionable for Monday's contest against the Bears, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.
Analysis: This is a somewhat surprising development as there was conflicting reports whether Thielen was even able to participate in Saturday's practice. Mark Craig of The Star Tribune reported Friday Thielen would essentially be considered a game-time decision for Monday's pivotal divisional matchup, though a questionable designation on the team's final injury report would bode well for a possible return. If eventually ruled active for Monday, the star wideout would miss just one week after suffering a high ankle sprain during the Week 13 loss to the Lions.
Dec 18, 2021 10:43 AM EST
Thielen (ankle) isn't practicing Friday, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.
Analysis: The wideout is present but not participating, which suggests he at least has some hope to play in Monday's game against the Bears. It doesn't look promising at the moment, however, with Thielen yet to practice since suffering a high-ankle sprain in the Week 13 loss to Detroit. K.J. Osborn stepped up as the No. 2 receiver in last week's win over Pittsburgh, with Dede Westbrook (now on the reserve/COVID-19 list) handling the No. 3 role. If Thielen and Westbrook both miss the upcoming game, rookie Ihmir Smith-Marsette could get a look as the No. 3 receiver.
Dec 17, 2021 9:35 AM EST
Thielen (ankle) didn't practice Thursday, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.
Analysis: Thielen remains in recovery mode from a high-ankle sprain as the Vikings took the field for the first time during Week 15 prep. Earlier Thursday, coach Mike Zimmer told Chad Graff of The Athletic that he's "hopeful" Thielen will be able to return Monday in Chicago. Considering Thielen suffered the injury Dec. 5, it may be wishful thinking for the wide receiver to play just a little more than two weeks later. Having said that, he does have two more sessions at his disposal to prove the health of his ankle.
Dec 16, 2021 11:39 AM EST
Thielen (ankle) has been ruled out for Thursday's game against Pittsburgh.
Analysis: As expected, with the game taking place four days after Thielen suffered a high-ankle sprain in the loss to Detroit. His absence leaves K.J. Osborn as the No. 2 receiver and Dede Westbrook as the No. 3, while Thielen's next chance to play will be Week 15 against the Bears on a Monday night (Dec. 20). It isn't yet clear if he has a realistic shot to be healthy by then.
Dec 8, 2021 10:55 AM EST
Thielen (ankle) didn't participate in the open portion of Tuesday's practice and is expected to be sidelined for Thursday's game against the Steelers, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.
Analysis: While the Vikings haven't officially ruled Thielen out for Week 14, head coach Mike Zimmer told Tomasson prior to practice that the wideout will return at some point the season. The fact that Zimmer is talking about Thielen's status in that manner implies that he's doubtful -- at best -- to suit up Thursday, so expect the receiver to officially receive the "out" tag at the conclusion of Wednesday's practice. Thielen's likely absence should clear the way for K.J. Osborn and Dede Westbrook to handle more reps alongside No. 1 receiver Justin Jefferson.
Dec 7, 2021 11:23 AM EST
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