Trade speculation has followed Stefon Diggs like a shadow since the beginning of last NFL season, and on Tuesday the speculation sped to its latest high after all Vikings-related content was removed from Diggs' Instagram account.
No photos. No mention of the Vikings in his bio. No explanation.
Throw in the 26-year-old's cryptic tweets and Diggs is essentially holding the rumor mill in his hands, with people on the outside left to speculate about what's next for the speedy receiver who caught 63 passes for 1,130 yards and six touchdowns last season.
Diggs is entering the second year of a five-year, $78 million deal with the Vikings, but his Instagram move has led to widespread guesswork from New England Patriots fans who are begging their team to land a receiver that could help convince Tom Brady to stay versus leave when free agency opens March 18.
"Stefon Diggs is unhappy in Minnesota," said Colin Cowherd on Tuesday, suggesting that the Patriots could give the Vikings their first-round pick, which is 23rd overall.
"Minnesota's looking to move off him for the right pick. They are," he added.
This isn't the first time Patriots fans have become antsy about Diggs. Back in mid-October, Football Morning in America columnist Peter King suggest a Diggs to New England trade makes sense.
"5. I think Stefon Diggs to the Patriots at the trading deadline makes sense, especially if the season goes south for Minnesota. Say, for second and fourth-round picks in 2020. A first-rounder strikes me as too rich for Diggs, but a low second isn’t enough. New England never worries about the consequences of trading picks, and won’t if in three weeks they’re getting zero tight end production and still are needy at wideout.
"6. I think what makes the trade pretty attractive for New England is that Diggs is 25, has a contract reasonable for a good to very good wideout, and has zero guaranteed money in the last year of it. So the Patriots could cut him before his age-30 season in 2023 without financial consequences. Would you want Diggs, now 25, for the next 3.5 years at $37.2 million? I sure would, if what I had to give up was, say, the 60th and 125th picks to get him."
It never came to fruition (and the Patriots no longer have a 2020 second-round pick), but the reason it was talked about in the first place is because Diggs had two unexcused absences from practice in the week leading up to Minnesota's win over the New York Giants and said "there's truth to all rumors" when asked about the trade conjecture.
After that game, ESPN's Josina Anderson asked Diggs if he wants to be with the Vikings. With a smirk brewing on his face, Diggs answered: "Yeah, I want to be in Minnesota," before flashing a big smile and delivering a wink.