T.J. Hockenson Traded to Minnesota

Detroit Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson
Detroit Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson
Photo: USA Today Sports Images

NFL Week 8 - The Minnesota Vikings have acquired Detroit Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson via trade, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. The Vikings will send a 2023 second-round pick and a 2024 third-round pick to Detrout in exchange for Hockenson, a 2023 fourth, and a 2024 fourth.

Hockenson was drafted by the Detroit Lions eighth overall in the year 2019 and was quickly integrated into the offense. Hockenson finished second on the team in targets in each of the last three seasons, including through seven games this season. Hockenson currently ranks 9th in DYAR and 10th in DVOA among tight ends; his 8.4% DVOA is on pace for the best finish by DVOA of his career.  

The news comes just one day after ESPN's Jeremy Fowler reported that Vikings starting tight end Irv Smith Jr. would be sidelined for the near future with a high ankle sprain sustained in Sunday's win over the Arizona Cardinals. Smith ranked 37th in DYAR and 36th in DVOA among 37 qualifying tight ends this season. 



20 comments, Last at 02 Nov 2022, 8:19pm

#1 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 01, 2022 - 12:55pm


Typo, but fair.

So he's good, and what you got back isn't what you spent on him. Boy, there's a reason granddad didn't let you run the big company.

Points: 0

#3 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:04pm

It's like buying a pretty decent house that you realized you over-payed for, and then selling it for like 1/3 of what you paid for it.

Points: 0

#19 by Lost Ti-Cats Fan // Nov 01, 2022 - 9:08pm

Nailed it.  "Now everybody will forget about us overpaying for that guy."

Probably good for Hockenson, who's unlikely to have to hear talk in Minnesota about how the Vikings gave up too much to get him. Oh, and he gets to play for a playoff-bound team, so that part's an upgrade for him, too, come to think of it.

Points: 0

#2 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:02pm

Ugh, hate it.  Yeah, his blocking was a bit disappointing, and he's a clear tier or two below Kittle and Kelce.....but he's 25, a top 10 pass-catcher at his position, and getting better each year. 

Unless his future contract demands were going to be unreasonable, why not keep him around for your future rookie QB?  In that context, they didn't really get enough for him.  

Points: 0

#13 by Mr Shush // Nov 01, 2022 - 2:07pm

The consensus seems to be that his future contract demands were indeed going to be steep.

Points: 0

#15 by Spanosian Magn… // Nov 01, 2022 - 4:09pm

But he's not a free agent until after 2023. Having a good player on a rookie contract for another year ought to command a significant premium, I should think.

Although, are there non-Kelce, non-Kittle TEs who would command a 1st Rounder in a trade? Maybe Andrews, maybe Pitts if he counts as a "TE"? I guess the Hockenson trade might actually be the "premium."

Points: 0

#4 by RevBackjoy // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:08pm

I disagree- I think this is a great move! ;-)

This helps make up for the Vikes' idiotic 1st round draft pick exchange with... the Detrout Loins. Dueling stupidity!

Points: 0

#5 by RevBackjoy // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:08pm

This also helps mitigate the Irv Smith Jr mistake from 2019. Upgrading from a poor 2019 2nd round TE to a solid 2019 1st rounder, with a minimal cost of draft capital? I'm liking this trade more by the second.

Points: 0

#6 by theslothook // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:25pm

Too lazy to copy and paste my comments from the Smith trade here but the message is the same.

Points: 0

#8 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:30pm


Lions: "Hey, we can just draft another tight end with one of the picks the Vikings sent us....he might even be just as good as T.J. Hockenson!"

Points: 0

#7 by BigRichie // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:26pm

 ... was that one of the 4th Round picks going back to Minnesota was conditional??

Points: 0

#16 by sandbun // Nov 01, 2022 - 5:57pm

If they win a playoff game (not sure if it needs to be this year or either this year or next) then the 2024 4th round pick turns into a 5th rounder.

Points: 0

#9 by BigRichie // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:37pm

Short run, will this help the Vikings all that much? I'd think it'll take some time anyway to integrate Hockenson into the passing game. The running game less so, but supposedly he's an adequate-but-no-better blocker? And we're all rather pessimistic about the Vikes' playoff potential.

Long run? The Vikings trade a latish 2nd Round draft choice for a negotiating advantage regarding their new tight end. Unless they sign Hockenson to a mildly/slightly market-friendly extension, that strikes me as a long run loss.

If Hockenson helps Minnesota win a Divisional Round playoff game, and/or signs a friendly extention, Win. Otherwise, Loss.

Points: 0

#12 by Joey-Harringto… // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:45pm

"but supposedly he's an adequate-but-no-better blocker"

That's being generous.  My eyes tell me he occasionally shows flashes as a run blocker, but is overall slightly below-average, and PFF has his run blocking graded in the 40's (his pass pro is pretty good, FWIW).

Points: 0

#10 by Johnny Ocean // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:37pm

Is the Irv Smith problem really worth it?  Is Hockenson really all that big an upgrade when Minnesota does not really focus on the TE in their passing attack?  Did anyone notice that Hockenson can't block?  I guess doing the deal is a way to signal to ownership that you are an elite team with SB potential because you are willing to go get a decent replacement for the injured TE with 14 catches and a single TD so far this season.    

Points: 0

#14 by andrew // Nov 01, 2022 - 3:26pm

Kevin O'Connell does focus on tight ends a fair amount, he has featured Irv Smith more than Vikings fans would probably like and has also worked Johnny Mundt in a fair amount.

Points: 0

#17 by TheAnonymousCo… // Nov 01, 2022 - 7:49pm

Smith has -52 DYAR on 33 targets and Mundt has -11 DYAR on 14 targets.  3rd WR K.J. Osborn has 31 targets so far this year.  (The only other WR/TEs with targets are Reagor with 5, Nailor with 1 -- on the fake punt -- and 3rd string blocking TE Ellefson with 3) 

Points: 0

#11 by RickD // Nov 01, 2022 - 1:44pm

The Vikings are in good position to compete for a high seed and might as well make a run for the brass ring this season. Hockenson is a good  pass catcher and will help spread out the passing attack.  And the cost isn't bad at all. 

Points: 0

#18 by TomC // Nov 01, 2022 - 8:21pm

Maybe this is outdated thinking, but I'm shocked they traded him to a division rival.

Points: 0

#20 by ImNewAroundThe… // Nov 02, 2022 - 8:19pm

You had top 5 TE (Kelce, Kittle, Pitts, Andrews) that apparently WANTED to be there and you gave him up for what is currently the 61st pick. 

In division doesn't matter. If it's the best, then take it (or in this case, KEEP HIM). There's no reason to be afraid. You know their weakness. If there are none, DONT TRADE EM!

Points: 0

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