The 49ers thought they would miss Stefon Diggs during the 2020 season.
They now are wrong.
The Minnesota Vikings are trading the electric wide receiver to the Buffalo Bills, Fox Sports' Jay Glazer reported Monday night.
The reported deal is a massive one, with the Vikings receiving four draft picks, including a 2020 first-round pick, in return, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported citing sources.
The 49ers don't play the Vikings during the 2020 season, but they are slated to play the Bills at some point, so they will have to deal with Diggs this year.
In the 49ers' 27-10 win over the Vikings in the NFC divisional-round-game on Jan. 11, Diggs caught two passes for 57 yards and a touchdown.
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Diggs is coming off back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons. In 2019, he caught 63 passes for 1,130 yards and six touchdowns.
The good news for the 49ers is that an NFC playoff team weakened its offense. If they match up again with the Vikings in the playoffs this year, coordinator Robert Saleh and his defense won't have to worry about one of the most dynamic receivers in the NFL.
Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen officially is listed as questionable for Saturday's NFC Divisional Playoff Game against the 49ers at Levi's Stadium, but he reportedly feared he'd be out for much longer.
Thielen sustained an ankle injury in Wednesday's practice after getting his feet tangled with a teammate. The teammate's cleat "broke through the shoe and sock covering the back of [Thielen's] left heel," NFL Media's Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero reported Saturday, leading to "the immediate fear that he'd torn his Achilles."
"When Thielen's heel was sufficiently numb and the doctors were checking him out, the first thing he did was reach down and grab his Achilles to make sure it was intact," Rapoport and Pelissero wrote. "When he felt around and knew there was no tear, he felt relief."
Thielen seems to have quickly moved on from those initial fears. He told NFL Network on Thursday (h/t 49ers.com) that he was "going to do whatever it takes to be out there on Saturday with my teammates.”
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The 29-year-old played in just 10 regular-season games this season, catching 30 passes for 418 yards and six touchdowns. He made a big impact in the Vikings' NFC Wild Card Game upset of the New Orleans Saints last week, catching seven passes for 129 yards.
Though he and fellow standout wideout Stefon Diggs are ailing, both players are capable of posing problems to the 49ers. Of the players on the remaining playoff teams, only two had more receiving yards this season than Diggs (1,130).
Stefon Diggs missed two Minnesota Vikings practices this week with the flu, an illness that stood zero chance of keeping the receiver out of Saturday’s playoff game against the 49ers.
He wasn’t included on the Vikings’ official injury report and will play against the 49ers without impediment.
Diggs certainly was chipper when talking to the press Thursday afternoon, and definitely is ready to compete for a chance to advance to the NFC Championship Game.
He understands that accomplishment won’t be easy against the 49ers' defense, especially veteran cornerback Richard Sherman.
“He has been one of the best players in our league for a long time,” Diggs said. “I have a lot of respect for the guy. He’s very talented individual, very smart. I would say facing him increases the competitive juices. I’ve got them regardless.”
They’re driving him to play no matter what ailment or illness he was dealing with heading into the divisional round. He says he’s 100 percent, but he’d play at far less.
“Even if I was 30 percent, I’d be out there,” Diggs said. “It’s football and it’s that time of the year. Nothing’s going to be perfect. Everyone’s got bumps and bruises, and I won’t let a little flu keep me from the game.”
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The 49ers don’t have cornerbacks shadow receivers and Saturday won’t be any different, but Sherman allowed one 18-yard catch in two targets during a Week 1 matchup against the Vikings in 2018. They also faced off in a 2015 playoff game, but Diggs didn’t have a catch in one target against Sherman.
Diggs also didn't have a catch against Sherman during a 2015 regular season matchup either, meaning he hasn't had much success against someone he'll see a lot on Saturday at Levi's Stadium.