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Lions trading tight end T.J. Hockenson to Vikings

Oct 30, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA;  Detroit Lions tight end T.J. Hockenson (88) runs against Miami Dolphins safety Verone McKinley III (32) during the first half  at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Junfu Han-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Junfu Han-USA TODAY Sports

The Detroit Lions are trading Pro Bowl tight end T.J. Hockenson to division rival Minnesota in exchange for two draft picks, ESPN and NFL Network reported Tuesday.

The Vikings are sending Detroit a 2023 second-round pick and a 2024 fourth-rounder, per the reports. The Vikings get Hockenson, a 2023 fourth-round pick and a 2024 conditional fourth-round pick.

The Vikings lost tight end Irv Smith Jr. to a high-ankle sprain last Sunday. He’s expected to miss multiple weeks. The team’s only option on the active roster is Johnny Mundt, who had 12 catches in 2022.

Smith Jr. missed the entire 2021 season and three games in 2020 but had played in all seven games for the Vikings this season.

Hockenson, 25, has 26 catches for 395 yards and three touchdowns in seven starts this season. He had eight catches for 179 yards and two TDs in Week 4 alone against Seattle.

He’s in the final year of his four-year rookie contract with a fifth-year option for 2023 that would pay $9.4 million before Hockenson could reach free agency in March 2024.

Taken No. 8 overall by Detroit in the 2019 draft, Hockenson has 186 career catches for 2,068 yards and 15 TDs in 47 games (42 starts). He earned Pro Bowl honors in 2020.

The Lions are high on rookie tight end James Mitchell, who was drafted in the fifth round after tearing his ACL at Virginia Tech in 2021. Mitchell caught his first NFL pass last week at Miami.

–Field Level Media

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