This afternoon the Detroit Lions traded T.J. Hockenson to the Minnesota Vikings. While there was some uncertainty whether the fourth-year tight end would be moved or sign an extension with Detroit, the answer became clear when he was dealt along with two picks (2023 4th round, 2024 conditional fourth-round pick) for a 2023 second-round pick and 2024 fourth-round pick. Originally selected in the first round, Hockenson was always just short of what was advertised and it seems as though the Lions and GM Brad Holmes got a decent return for a TE that never eclipsed 1,000 yards.
What are fans saying after the Detroit Lions traded T.J. Hockenson?
Minnesota Fans seem pretty excited about the acquisition
Detroit Lions fans react to T.J. Hockenson trade
Hockenson's time as a Lion left a lot to be desired
After being the eighth pick of the 2019 NFL draft, the expectations for T.J. Hockenson were sky-high. Highly touted out of the University of Iowa, Hock was expected to be a good run-blocking tight end and one that could stretch the field and open up the passing game. That never truly came to fruition.
In a year where the Lions would have to decide to extend Hockenson or not, they opted to look to the future and move on from the long-haired tight end. For his career, Hockenson caught 186 passes on 287 targets, 2,068 yards, and 15 touchdowns. He is considered to be a top-5 fantasy tight end and the opportunity to share the field with Justin Jefferson could allow for a more impactful presence on the field for the Vikings.
The Vikings are the clear front runners in the NFC North, sitting at 6-1, with a commanding three-game lead on the next competitor. They just lost Irv Smith to a high ankle sprain and needed to upgrade their tight end room. This deal nets the Lions draft picks and allows the Vikings' offense to not miss a beat as they push toward the playoffs.