Vikings Add More Depth at Tight End

Sep 27, 2020; Inglewood, California, USA; Carolina Panthers tight end Colin Thompson (86) carries the ball during pregame warmups before playing the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings had their rookies report to training camp on Sunday, and on Tuesday, July 25th, the veterans will follow suit. Before this year’s training camp period fully begins though, the Vikings have decided to add more depth at the tight end position.

According to a report by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Vikings have signed former Carolina Panthers TE Colin Thompson. Schefter tweeted on Monday, “Former Panthers’ TE Colin Thompson, who spent the past three seasons in Carolina, is signing a one-year deal with the Minnesota Vikings, per source.”

Thompson played at the collegiate level for both the Temple Owls and Florida Gators. The tight end caught 19 passes for 208 yards and a touchdown over three seasons at Temple from 2014-16. He then signed with the New York Giants in May 2017 after becoming an undrafted free agent that spring.

Tight End
Sep 2, 2016; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Temple Owls tight end Colin Thompson (86) runs after a catch against Army Black Knights defensive back Rhyan England (20) during the first half at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

During his first three NFL seasons, Thompson was mainly a practice squad player, spending time both in New York and with the Chicago Bears from 2017-19 but not appearing in a single NFL game during that time.

Then, he signed with the Carolina Panthers in 2020, and he made his NFL regular season debut in Week 2, playing seven total snaps. He would go on to play in 15 games during that season, including four starts, catching a single pass that ended up being a seven-yard touchdown reception.

In 2021, Thompson remained a key piece with the Panthers special teams, playing in 14 games and recording 96 special teams snaps, but he did not record a reception with the offense during that season despite starting two more games.

Nov 15, 2020; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers tight end Colin Thompson (86) celebrates with tight end Ian Thomas (80) after scoring a touchdown as Tampa Bay Buccaneers strong safety Antoine Winfield Jr. (31) is in the foreground in the first quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

2022 saw Thompson once again return to the Panthers, but this time around, he went back to his usual role as a practice squad member. He did not appear in a single game during the season for Carolina.

Now, Thompson heads to a Minnesota Vikings team where the TE room is rather packed heading into training camp. T.J. Hockenson and Josh Oliver headline the group, but they have more solid depth with all three of Johnny Mundt, Nick Muse, and Ben Sims competing for roster spots alongside the free agent acquisition.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.