Could the Minnesota Vikings trade All-Pro WR Justin Jefferson?

Could the best wide receiver in the NFL find himself on a new team in 2024?

Minnesota Vikings v Detroit Lions
Minnesota Vikings v Detroit Lions / Mike Mulholland/GettyImages

Wide receiver Justin Jefferson of the Minnesota Vikings is the best pass-catcher in the NFL by far, but could his current team ship him to a new club for 2024? With much of the Vikings core getting older or becoming free agents this offseason, the team could be in line for a bit of a reset. Yes, the Vikings have young talent, but players like Kirk Cousins, Danielle Hunter, Harrison Smith, Dalton Risner, and others are either free agents and/or clearly are not part of the team's long-term plans.

In the 2023 NFL Draft, the Vikings drafted Jordan Addison in the first round. Picking a first-round wide receiver with Justin Jefferson already on the roster is a bit interesting, and Jefferson himself just finished year four in the NFL and is still on his rookie contract, which is set to progress into his fifth-year option in 2024.

"Just over a year later, it appears the Vikings might have a real issue when it comes to Jefferson’s situation. There were many who expected that after discussions last offseason, Jefferson’s contract would get done before the 2023 regular-season opener against Tampa Bay.

That didn’t happen, raising questions as to what had broken down. Under owners Zygi and Mark Wilf, the Vikings have shown a willingness to spend, and Jefferson was in a position to command a massive contract for once the fifth-year option on his rookie deal expired after the 2024 season"

Judd Zulgad / Vikings Wire

It definitely isn't nothing that Jefferson and the Vikings have not agreed to a long-term contract extension. And usually, in the NFL, players at or near the top of their positions typically get a contract extension after their third season, which is the first year they become eligible. Jefferson has not yet signed a long-term deal with them, and with the other parts of the Vikings roster, it's easy to see an argument for trading Jettas, believe it or not.

The team doesn't have anyone in the building who can be a franchise QB. They'll need some young pass-rush help as well. Some reinforcements along the interior of their offensive line, a bell-cow running back, and another piece in the secondary are also all roster needs.

Jordan Addison had a stellar rookie season and does feel like a true WR1 in the NFL. TJ Hockenson is one of the best tight ends in the NFL and arguably the best receiving tight end. The VIkes also have an elite left tackle in Christian Darrisaw. Those three represent a very strong offensive core for a rookie QB.

Just think for a second of how much the team could potentially get in a trade for Jefferson; could the Arizona Cardinals, who pick fourth overall in the 2024 NFL Draft and who already have a franchise QB part with both of their first-round picks for Jefferson? If so, the Vikings would have picks 4, 11, and 27. They'd also not have to worry about giving Justin Jefferson a market-resetting deal, which is effectively a ton of cap savings. The Vikings would have plenty of ammunition to work the draft board and get a franchise QB.

They'd also likely have up to two other first-rounders to find other core players, assuming they could use one of their three first-round picks for a rookie signal-caller. I can't help but to think that the Minnesota Vikings trading Justin Jefferson is a thing that could definitely happen this offseason.