The Vikings full 2022 schedule will drop in less than three weeks.
The NFL announced numerous key dates Thursday afternoon that pertain to the 2022 schedule, with May 12 being the day that every team's full slate will be revealed.
Here are other important dates the league announced this week:
April 28: The first Thursday Night Football game on Amazon Prime Video will be unveiled during the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft. That Week 2 game will take place on Sept. 15.
May 4: International games revealed; (The Vikings last played internationally in 2017 with a win in London over the Browns.)
Week of May 9: Select games will be released through various league media partners.
May 12: Teams can announce their first home game opponent at 5 p.m. (CT), with the full schedule getting released later that evening.
The Vikings are set to have nine home games and eight road games in the 2022 regular season, a flip from 2021 when they had an extra road game in the first year of the 17-game schedule.
Besides the usual six games against the NFC North, Minnesota will also play every team from the NFC East and AFC East. The Vikings will also play home games against one team from the NFC West (Arizona) and AFC South (Indianapolis) that also finished in second place in their division in 2021, plus a road game against an NFC South team (New Orleans) that also finished in second place in their division.
Here are the Vikings home and away opponents for 2022:
Home: Bears, Lions, Packers, Patriots, Jets, Cowboys, Giants, Cardinals and Colts
Away: Bears, Lions, Packers, Bills, Dolphins, Commanders, Eagles and Saints
The 2022 season will be the first for Vikings Head Coach Kevin O'Connell with Minnesota.
ESPN's Barnwell unveils annual all-trade mock draft
Nothing with the draft is ever for sure, but there are usually at least a handful of trades in the first round every year.
The Vikings were involved in one of them a year ago, trading down from 14th overall to the 23rd spot. Minnesota also received a pair of third-round picks (Nos. 66 and 86), and sent No. 143 to New York.
The Vikings then drafted tackle Christian Darrisaw in the first round before taking Kellen Mond (66th) and Wyatt Davis (86th).
What could Thursday night have in store as far as trades go?
Bill Barnwell of ESPN recently unveiled his annual all-trade mock draft, an exercise in which he plays the role of GM for each team. The catch, however, is that Barnwell orchestrates a trade for all 32 first-round picks.
Barnwell included the Vikings twice in his piece, with one trade moving up and the other moving back.
He hypothesized that Minnesota could move up to No. 8 overall in a deal with Atlanta. Barnwell had the Vikings sending the 12th and 77th picks to the Falcons for the eighth and 213th selections.
The Vikings are probably not likely to trade up often under new General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, but this would be a small move to take a cornerback, most likely Derek Stingley, Jr. (LSU). There's a chance Stingley could fall to Minnesota at No. 12, but after the 20-year-old ran a 4.37-second 40-yard dash at his pro day, it seemed to lock him in at the bottom of the top 10. The Vikings would be looking at the Seahawks and Jets as possible enemies to move past with this trade.
Cornerback is one position the Falcons don't need to address, given that the best player on their roster last season was second-year standout A.J. Terrell. With their cap and roster in ruins, Atlanta needs as many meaningful draft picks as possible. This deal would give it six of the top 82 picks in this draft, allowing General Manager Terry Fontenot to either restock the roster or trade some of those picks for better selections in 2023.
As for the trade back, Barnwell swung a deal with the Vikings and Chargers that moved Minnesota to the back half of the first round.
The Vikings only gave up one pick (No. 12), while getting the 17th and 79th picks back, plus a fourth-round pick in 2023.
Are the Chargers one piece away? The biggest hole on their roster is at right tackle, where Bryan Bulaga wasn't able to stay healthy after signing with L.A. from Green Bay in 2020. The Chargers nailed their first-round pick last year when they took left tackle Rashawn Slater; here, they would be moving up ahead of the Texans and Ravens to get someone to patrol the right side, perhaps Charles Cross (Mississippi State).
The Vikings are in an uncomfortable space between rebuilding and competing as a product of the Kirk Cousins deal; they need to add pieces in the secondary, which is something they can do later in the first round. This move would leave the Chargers without their second- and third-round picks, but if it helps keep Justin Herbert upright, they won't mind.
The NFC North was a popular division in Barnwell's article, as those teams were included in nine total trades, which was tied for the second-most with the AFC North. The NFC East led the way with 10 trades involving teams from that division.
Barnwell's full article can be found here.
Thielen Foundation to host charity softball game on May 31
Adam Thielen and his teammates will trade the gridiron for the diamond on May 31, all for a good cause.
The Vikings wide receiver announced this week that Thielen Foundation, which he formed with his wife, Caitlin, will host a charity softball game on May 31.
The event will take place at CHS Field, home of the St. Paul Saints, the Triple-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins.
Tickets for the event can be found here. There will be a home run derby and giveaways, plus a silent auction and raffle.
Proceeds raised will go toward the Thielen Foundation, which aims to "serve, educate and inspire underserved youth to reach their full potential."
As for the stars of the event, there will be plenty of them. The Thielen Foundation unveiled the lineups this week, with more than 30 Vikings players set to participate.
Plenty of defensive stars will be on hand, too.