Thielen caught 12 of 13 targets for 131 yards and a touchdown during Sunday's 29-29 tie with the Packers.
Thielen displayed an excellent rapport with quarterback Kirk Cousins in this one, leading the team in targets and receiving yardage while catching all but one pass that was thrown his way. He was rewarded for his efforts with a 22-yard touchdown reception with just 31 seconds left in the fourth quarter, which led to the game-tying two-point conversion by Stefon Diggs. Thielen is off to a tremendous start to the season, totaling 233 yards and a touchdown on 18 receptions through two games. He'll look to keep it rolling in a favorable matchup with the Bills next week.
Thielen brought in six of 12 targets for 102 yards in Sunday's 24-16 win over the 49ers.
Thielen drew even with Dalvin Cook for the team lead in receptions while pacing the team in receiving yardage. The fifth-year receiver was only able to bring half of his targets from new quarterback Kirk Cousins, but the two displayed solid rapport overall and figure to only up their chemistry as the season unfolds. Thielen will look to build on a productive season-opening effort in a divisional clash in Week 2 against the Packers.
Thielen (leg) likely will spend a lot of time in the slot this season, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com reports.
There was reason to believe Thielen would spend more time working outside in three-wide formations after the Vikings signed slot specialist Kendall Wright, who ultimately was released Saturday after losing out to Laquon Treadwell in a battle for the No. 3 receiver job. Thielen thus figures to reprise his role from last season, taking outside snaps in two-WR formations and frequently shifting to the slot when the Vikings go three-wide. The 28-year-old wide receiver suffered a minor leg injury at Tuesday's practice, but it isn't expected to threaten his availability for Week 1 against the 49ers.
Thielen had four receptions for 26 yards on six targets in Friday's preseason win over Seattle.
Thielen and Kirk Cousins haven't seemed to get in sync during the preseason, but we wouldn't be too worried as Thielen should be a key cog in the offense once the regular season begins.
Thielen finished the 2017 regular season on a low note and played through a pair of minor back fractures in the playoffs, but he seems to have made good on his stated expectation that he wouldn't have any restrictions during the offseason. He can now turn his focus toward building chemistry with Cousins and new offensive coordinator John DeFilippo, hoping to replicate (or even exceed) his 2017 campaign. The 27-year-old wideout was fifth in the NFL in receiving yards (1,276) and eighth in receptions (91), but the touchdowns (four), yards per target (8.9) and catch rate (63.6 percent) all dropped of a bit from his breakout 2016 campaign. Diggs finished a distant second on the team with 95 targets, posting similar efficiency marks -- 67.4-percent catch rate, 8.9 YPT -- while scoring eight touchdowns in 14 games. Diggs was far more productive than Thielen in the playoffs, catching 14 of 22 targets for 207 yards and one very memorable touchdown.
|4||9/27/18||@ LAR||8:20 pm|
|5||10/7/18||@ PHI||4:25 pm|
|7||10/21/18||@ NYJ||1:00 pm|
|Bye: Week 10|
|11||11/18/18||@ CHI||1:00 pm|
|13||12/2/18||@ NE||4:25 pm|
|14||12/10/18||@ SEA||8:15 pm|
|16||12/23/18||@ DET||1:00 pm|
|Year||Team||G||No.||Yds||Lg||Avg||Blk||I20||TB||Downed||No||Ret Yds||TD||Net Avg|
|Year||Team||G||Fum||Lost||Fum Forced||Own Rec||Opp Rec||Yds||Tot Rec||TD|