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Adofo-Mensah, O’Connell talk roster moves, TJ Hockenson Contract, Team Captains

Big Thursday morning in Eagan

Tennessee Titans v Minnesota Vikings
Justin Jefferson will be a team captain for the first time in his career
Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Head Coach Kevin O’Connell and General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah held a 15 minute press conference Friday in Eagan and boy, it was chock full of announcements ahead of the upcoming season.

The biggest news from the press conference was that TJ Hockenson has signed his much-anticipated contract extension with the Vikings, which will make him one of the highest paid Tight Ends in the league.

Hockenson had an electric 2022 season with the Vikings after being traded mid-season from Detroit, catching 60 passes for just under 519 yards and 3 scores on 86 targets.

His top performance came in Week 16 against the Giants, with a record-breaking 13 catches for 109 yards and 2 touchdowns. It was the most for any Vikings Tight End in any single game across franchise history and were the most for a Tight End in any game in 2022 in the NFL.

Man, I will be sleeping a lot better knowing that a deal was made. Look for updates through the day as information becomes more available. I bet that ear infection and back pain is feeling a lot better today for Hock.

KOC also announced this year’s team captains:

QB Kirk Cousins (unanimous, besides his own vote), WR Justin Jefferson (his first-ever season as a captain), OT Brian O’Niell, SS Harrison Smith, LB Jordan Hicks, Edge Danielle Hunter, and FB CJ Ham and S Josh Metellus.

“Those eight Captains, I cannot feel better about that group, in addition to the rest of our leadership council that I meet with your pretty routinely. Those guys of help me become a better Head Coach and really helped me grow from your one to year two,” said O’Connell.

“It’s huge and it was really cool when I told him before announcing it to the team,” said O’Connell of Jefferson being named Captain. “He continues to just bring the energy to a huge part of our culture. I think we all know that but the next step for him really was to assume more of a leadership role and he had a great example sit next to him for his first three years in the league in Adam Thielen. It is a responsibility for him but he will pay it forward and he knows the benefit that it was for him and the other receivers will really benefit from that. I’m really proud of Justin and he will help us as as a football team on and off the field.”

Stay tuned for more reaction from today’s presser at Daily Norseman