Laquon Treadwell’s disappointing rookie season will end with him wearing street clothes as the Vikings wrap up their season against the Bears.
Treadwell, who was listed as doubtful to play on Friday’s injury report, is inactive today due to an ankle injury, denying him an opportunity to end his first NFL season on a high note, with starter Stefon Diggs not playing this afternoon. Treadwell will now miss his third straight game.
Treadwell, the 23rd overall pick in the 2016 draft, will finish his rookie season with only one catch — as many as quarterback Sam Bradford.
It is too early to declare Treadwell, the youngest player on the Vikings roster at 21, a bust. But it appeared heading into the season that he was the type of bigger-bodied possession receiver who could immediately contribute.
Instead, he was the rare first-round receiver who hardly played, in part due to the emergence of Adam Thielen, who with 40 yards today can become the team’s first 1,000-yard receiver since Sidney Rice in 2009.
With Treadwell and Diggs both out against the Bears, Caledonia native and former Gophers wide receiver Isaac Fruechte will make his NFL debut. The Vikings added him to their 53-man roster yesterday, making room for him by placing starting safety Andrew Sendejo on injured reserve.
With Sendejo out, Anthony Harris will start alongside Harrison Smith.
The Vikings will also be without running backs Adrian Peterson and C.J. Ham, guards Alex Boone and Willie Beavers, and QB Taylor Heinicke.
With right guard Brandon Fusco back after missing the past two games with a concussion, Joe Berger will move from right guard to left guard to replace Boone. Nick Easton will make his fifth straight start at center.
And, as expected, Bradford will make his 15th straight start behind center. Experts’ opinions are split over whether the bold trade for Bradford in September was worth it. But the Vikings would do it all over again.