Vikings

The Minnesota Vikings Are Big Losers In the Zach Ertz Trade

Oct 14, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles tight end Zach Ertz (86) walks off the field after loss to Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

What’s that? You thought the Yannick Ngakoue trade for a second-rounder last preseason was an all-time disaster? Well, the Chris Herndon trade is here to politely ask you to hold its beer.

After a preseason injury to the promising Irv Smith Jr., Rick Spielman reached for a replacement in exchange for precious draft capital and failed miserably. Unfortunately, the already terrible Herndon trade got even worse today. Zach Ertz, who the Vikings were rumored to have interest in before the Herndon trade, was traded for a nonconsequential player and a fifth-rounder. Yikes.

It’s bad enough Spielman overpaid for a worse player, but when you factor in Herndon’s dismal production since joining the Vikings, it makes the whole situation even harder to swallow.

Herndon is the lowest-graded offensive player on the Minnesota Vikings, with a 34.2 PFF grade this season. He’s coming off a particularly horrific performance against the Detroit Lions having contributed nothing offensively except two penalties. He is barely averaging 10 snaps a game, has yet to catch a pass and is consistently struggling in the team’s blocking scheme.

Don’t get me wrong, Spielman has done plenty of good for the Minnesota Vikings, including landing some fantastic picks in the draft. But he’s also failed to build a functional offensive line during his time here and continues to make poor trades that hamstring the team’s ability to grow.

That last sentence might seem like a bit of exaggeration since we’re only talking about a fourth-round pick. But last year’s Ngakoue trade completely altered the Vikings’ approach to the 2021 NFL draft. In a season where many jobs are on the line, including Spielman and Mike Zimmer’s, making a bad trade is a difficult hurdle. But having that trade revealed to be monumentally worse by another organization’s acquisition can really put a bunch of logs underneath the hot seat.

There’s no way around it. The Vikings are huge losers in the Zach Ertz trade.

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Oct 14, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles tight end Zach Ertz (86) walks off the field after loss to Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

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