Vikings Snap Counts: Wright’s unsung role in the offense
Stuck behind the talented Adam Thielen and a flashy Stefon Diggs on the depth chart, it’s easy to forget about Jarius Wright in the Minnesota Vikings offense.
Wright has all but disappeared in box scores since inking a four-year deal worth $14.8 million in September 2015, but he’s nonetheless carved out a small yet significant role in Minnesota’s 10 wins this season.
The 28-year-old has played in just 23 percent (190 of 837) of the offensive snaps in 2017, ranking behind wide receivers Thielen, Diggs and Laquon Treadwell, but he always seems to be in the Wright place at the Wright time when the Vikings need a big catch to extend a drive.
On the year, Wright has 14 receptions for 166 yards and two touchdowns. Eleven of his 14 catches have resulted in either a first down or a touchdown. And seven of those grabs have come on third down.
In the 13 snaps he played Sunday in Atlanta, Wright hauled in all three targets from Case Keenum for 18 yards, with two of those receptions ending in a fresh set of downs for the Vikings.
That includes his four-yard reception on third-and-3 in the third quarter that kept Minnesota’s go-ahead drive alive. The Vikings would go on to score five plays later on Kyle Rudolph’s six-yard touchdown catch to take a 14-9 lead.
A lead they never squandered.
Although underappreciated, and perhaps, underplayed, Wright’s work hasn’t gone unnoticed.
Other notes from Sunday’s snap counts:
— With tight end David Morgan sidelined with a concussion after taking a big hit on his only offensive snap early in the game, Blake Bell played in a season-high 27 snaps.
— Xavier Rhodes didn’t miss a single snap despite limping off the field after a Falcons drive on several occasions.
— Kyle Rudolph has played in at least 85 percent of the snaps in each game this season. On Sunday, he missed just two plays (64 of 66).
GAME 12: FALCONS (OFFENSE)
GAME 12: FALCONS (DEFENSE)