Minnesota Vikings: Tajae Sharpe won’t replace Diggs but adds quality depth

With the Minnesota Vikings signing free agent wide receiver Tajae Sharpe, here’s what the wideout will bring to Minnesota during the 2020 season.

After the departure of Stefon Diggs to start the offseason, the Minnesota Vikings have brought in a free agent wide receiver to help fill that void for the 2020 NFL season. On Wednesday, NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport reported that the Vikings have agreed to a contract with former Titans wide receiver Tajae Sharpe.

Rapoport stated on Twitter that Minnesota and Sharpe have agreed to a one-year contract that will bring him into the Vikings to join their wide receiver group this season.

At the start of the new league year last week, Minnesota moved on from Diggs, its No. 1 wide receiver who appeared to be frustrated with his role with the Vikings and was public about wanting out of Minnesota.

The Vikings ended up finding a trade partner to ship out the disgruntled Diggs, trading the young star wideout to the Buffalo Bills in exchange for a first-round draft pick in 2020 and a few other draft picks.

With the sudden need at wide receiver, Minnesota went to the free-agent market to bring in another wideout to pair alongside Adam Thielen and others in the wide receiver group for the Vikings, signing Sharpe to a one-year prove-it-type deal.

Sharpe will get thrown right into the mix of the rest of the wide receiving corps in Minnesota, having a legitimate chance at becoming a No. 2 wideout behind Thielen on the Vikings depth chart.

Sharpe wrapped up his third season in the NFL in 2019 after he broke into the league in 2016 after being drafted by the Titans out of UMass in the fifth round of the 2016 NFL Draft.

Sharpe, who didn’t play in the 2017 campaign, has appeared in at least 15 games a season in those three years in Tennessee, playing in all 16 regular-season contests in 2016 and 2018 while taking the field in 15 games for the Titans in 2019.

Last season, Sharpe started in six of the 15 games he played in Tennessee, finishing the year with 329 yards receiving and a career-high four touchdowns with 25 receptions. He also recorded a career-best 9.4 yards per catch and caught 71 percent of passes.

Sharpe is still a young player and could find himself remaining in Minnesota beyond this season if he puts together a strong showing in 2020. The wideout will turn 26 years old in December.

When it comes to where Sharpe could find himself within the Vikings depth chart, it’s not likely he would become the primary wideout target for Kirk Cousins and the Minnesota offense — especially with Thielen likely to take on that role for the first time in his career in 2020 — but Sharpe could emerge as a nice option behind Thielen.

Minnesota currently has two players on its roster who currently have more than 10 career receptions, with those two wide receivers being Thielen and Olabisi Johnson.

Sharpe will enter a battle with Johnson, Chad Beebe and any potential incoming wide receivers in the future that the Vikings add either through free agency or via the draft.

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The 6-2, 194-pound wideout could find himself as a No. 2 option within an offense that was looking to add to the wide receiver group ahead of the start of the 2020 NFL season. It will be interesting to watch and see if he is able to make the most of the opportunity with the purple and gold if he makes the cut for the roster this year.

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