The Vikings clearly have an amazing Wide Receiver room. They’ve made that very clear this year with Justin Jefferson playing as spectacularly as he always does, and Adam Thielen being the red zone threat he’s always been. But there’s one question that has been lingering over the past few weeks for that receiving group; who is the Vikings’ WR3, and should they consider changing?
KJ Osborn currently holds the title of WR3 in the Vikings wide receiver room, however, we’ve seen less and less production from Osborn over the weeks. Similar to last year, Osborn had one amazing game against the Detroit Lions, catching 5 balls for 73 yards and 1 touchdown. But since then the production hasn’t been there. 6 yards, 41 yards, 8 yards, 17 yards, 35 yards, and only 1 touchdown since the game against Detroit.
The other option that has been placed into the WR3 position a couple of times this season is Jalen Reagor. Living in the shadow of Justin Jefferson has been all that Reagor has known for his career so far. He was drafted one sport ahead of Jefferson and got nowhere near the production, and therefore was not respected by the fans of the team that drafted him. Reagor was traded to Minnesota this offseason to be paired alongside Jefferson and has mainly been the Vikings’ punt return man, where he has seen some success, at least for a punt returner’s standards.
Reagor has stepped into the WR3 and slot receiver positions a couple of times this season, and when he has, he hasn’t disappointed. In each of the last 3 games, Reagor has been targeted once and caught all three of those targets for 14, 25, and 38 yards. Reagor has also found some success being used in the jet sweep for the Vikings this season, having rushed the ball twice for 26 yards.
Even though Reagor has been limited in games when it comes to receiving, he has delivered when Kirk Cousins has called his name. Maybe it’s time for the Vikings to experiment for a game or two with Reagor as the primary WR3, and see his success as a starter, compared to a couple of snaps per game. Unfortunately for Reagor or Osborn, moving up to a WR2 position does not seem likely in the near future as Adam Thielen is under contract until the end of the 2024 NFL season. The Vikings could always release Thielen, or Thielen could retire, given that Thielen is 32 and his production has gone down, but for now, the two will continue to fight it out for the WR3 position this year, and for the next couple of years at least.