Fantasy Implications: Stefon Diggs vs. Adam Thielen – by Tyler Belawske

Training Camps are now up and running, so it’s time to ask – who are you Skol Clapping for this year?

The Minnesota Vikings have two of the best young receivers in the game this year, and with the addition of quarterback Kirk Cousins the passing numbers are only going up.

Wide receivers, Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen, are going to be two pass catchers who will carry you to the playoffs and help win your league’s championship. But which one are you going to draft for your team?

If the draft falls the right way you may be able to get both, but I would advise against that. Having two wide receivers from the same team, you will have to deal with the same bye weeks and using a draft pick within a round of two for the same team is almost a waste.

Luckily for you, I am here to breakdown each player to help you make the best pick for your team.

Stefon Diggs (6’0, 191lbs)

Long ball, check. Big plays, check. High upside, check. Injury prone, check. Injuries maybe the only thing that hold Diggs back from establishing himself as a first-choice fantasy receiver.

New quarterback Kirk Cousins will not have a problem finding Diggs streaking down the side lines to the end zone. Last year Diggs put up 64 catches, 849 yards and 8 touchdowns in 14 games. Those numbers will go up. He is a smaller receiver, but makes up for it with his speed and route running skills.

His average draft position (at the time of writing) is 3.12, which may be a little late if you want to pick him up as your second choice wide out. But, if he falls into the fourth, he will be a steal in your flex position – which is where I hope to nab him.

Diggs is a baller, as we saw in the playoff game against the Saints and, if you draft him – I’m certain he’ll come up big for you.


Stefon Diggs
Photo Credit: Brad Rempel/USA TODAY Sports

Adam Thielen (6’2″, 200lbs)

Hands, check. Excellent route runner, check. Healthy, check. PPR machine, check. The only thing that will keep Thielen from becoming a first-choice fantasy receiver is if the Vikings rely on the running back more than the passing game. I don’t think that will happen but you never know.

Kirk Cousins is going to love Thielen as he will be the across the middle receiver for the team. His size will allow him to utilize those slant routes over the top of the o-line and take hits game in and game out.

His stats last year were 91 catches, 1,276 yards, and 4 touchdowns. I think his numbers will go up this year, not too much – but they will go up.

His average draft position is 3.10 (at the time of writing), just two picks ahead of Diggs. I am okay with this draft position and believe he is a solid second choice receiver for your team. Combine him up with another earlier round wide out and you will be set.

I’m in no doubt that Thielan is a PPR machine, and is certainly someone who could pick up enough points to take you to the playoffs – snap him up and smile as Cousins picks him out time and again this season.

Adam Thielan
Photo Credit: Keith Allison/CC BY-SA 2.0

Picking between these two guys can and will be tough. Diggs has plenty of high scoring games, but maybe streaking as you won’t get the big play ball every week. Thielen is more consistent and steady. My advice would be to target Thielen but snap Diggs up if he falls below his ADP in your drafts.

I think both receivers will produce this season, so whichever you draft, you can be confident of some solid production. One word of caution would be not to reach for either one in the draft though. Let them fall to you and you will be on your way to the playoffs.

By Tyler Belawske – @TylerBelawske



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