Diggs was a highly-touted recruit out of Good Counsel before making his way to Maryland and starting the “Stay Home Movement.” Despite dealing with injuries frequently, the star wideout displayed tremendous athleticism and was one of the top pound-for-pound players to ever come through College Park.
Even though he missed 10 games games during his collegiate career, the Vikings still were comfortable selecting Diggs in the fifth round of the NFL Draft in April. The production clearly justified the selection as the Maryland native caught 150 passes for 2,227 yards and 14 touchdowns during his time in College Park.
Flip the script to the present day and Diggs is already impressing the Minnesota coaching staff with his quickness and athleticism.
“This guy’s got a chance to be really good,” Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said. “He runs great routes, he’s got excellent speed. He catches the ball as well as anybody I’ve seen, very, very easily and he’s been a model citizen, so that’s important. Pretty special for a young guy.”
Unfortunately for Diggs, it certainly looks to be an uphill climb to crack the depth chart at wide receiver.
The Vikings acquired former Pittsburgh Steelers star wideout Mike Wallace in the offseason, who will likely be the No. 1 option for quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. Minnesota also has the likes of Charles Johnson, Cordarrelle Patterson, and Jarius Wright ahead of Diggs on the depth chart.
Obviously, none of those three wide receivers have been overly productive during their NFL careers and don’t have the pedigree of a player like Diggs. The former Terp already seems to be in favor with the coaching staff, so it wouldn’t be a huge surprise if Diggs saw the field quite a bit during the 2015 season.
It appears that Diggs is very eager to help out the Vikings in any way he can. It’s been reported that Diggs is challenging Marcus Sherels for the punt return job.
As a freshman, Diggs did a solid job as a punt returner for the Terps. The former Good Counsel star fielded 22 punts for 221 yards (10.0 yards-per-return) and had similar success returning kickoffs, which he did end up running a pair of back for touchdowns.
Along with Wallace, Diggs could bring a big down-the-field threat that the Vikings currently lack. The long-term signing of former Green Bay Packers wideout Greg Jennings didn’t work out, but Minnesota now has a few home run hitters so to speak.
Diggs may not be a significant factor as a wide receiver in his first NFL season, but it wouldn’t be a huge surprise if he makes a name for himself in the return game. He’s not talented a player to be riding the bench for too long.