Adam Thielen being shut out is quite a rarity.
The Minnesota Vikings wide receiver didn’t have a single catch in four targets in Monday’s 23-10 loss to Green Bay at U.S. Bank Stadium. Excluding a game last month at Kansas City in which Thielen departed early in the first quarter after aggravating a hamstring injury, the last time Thielen didn’t have a reception in a game was in a 34-6 loss to Indianapolis on Dec. 18, 2016.
Monday marked Thielen’s second game back after he had missed four straight and five of six due to injury.
“It had nothing to do with the hamstring injury,’’ Thielen said of not catching a ball against the Packers. “I felt great out there and just had a few opportunities, didn’t make the plays, and the rest is out of my control.’’
The Vikings (10-5) are locked into the No. 6 seed in the NFC, and Sunday’s regular-season finale against Chicago (7-8) at U.S. Bank Stadium is meaningless from a playoff standpoint. It remains to be seen if starters play in the game.
“We don’t know,’’ Thielen said. “Coach (Mike) Zimmer’s going to tell us. … If we’re out there, we’re going to take advantage of it.’’
During his injury-plagued season, Thielen in 10 games has just 30 catches for 418 yards. That follows a two-year stretch in which he had 204 catches for 2,649 yards and made a pair of Pro Bowls.
On Monday, Thielen was hardly alone in having offensive struggles. The Vikings were held to a meager 139 yards of total offense,
“Any time you have a performance like that, yeah, you’re surprised,’’ Thielen said.