Diggs was captured on camera with his arms in the air, speaking to quarterback Josh Allen amid a frustrating 27-10 loss on January 22. Diggs finished the game with just four receptions for 35 yards. The Bills, who were preseason favorites to win the Super Bowl, fell flat in the playoffs for a third consecutive season since Diggs was traded in the 2020 offseason.
The Athletic’s Joe Buscaglia reported that Diggs “darted out of the locker room with all his stuff” before some of the Bills coaches had even made it to the locker room. Running back Duke Johnson stopped Diggs before he left the stadium and brought him back to the locker room.
“He left a few minutes later,” Buscaglia added.
Diggs’ emotional outburst drew widespread reactions on social media with Vikings becoming a central topic given his history in Minnesota.
NFL World Reacts to Stefon Diggs’ Outburst vs. Bills
In the aftermath of the Bills’ loss, several fans found Diggs’ outburst to be selfish, especially considering it was toward Allen.
“Nope! Can’t defend a guy making it about himself, no matter how good of a player, especially when his ire is directed at the face and future of the franchise,” one fan tweeted. “If the Bills can get a decent return, I’d look to trade Diggs before this becomes something bigger next year.”
Nope! Can’t defend a guy making it about himself, no matter how good of a player, especially when his ire is directed at the face and future of the franchise… If the Bills can get a decent return, I’d look to trade Diggs before this becomes something bigger next year.
— Scott’s Critical Mass (@scottsinvesting) January 23, 2023
There is a trend happening in Buffalo that is similar to Diggs’ time in Minnesota. The Vikings made three considerable playoff runs with Diggs from 2015 to 2019. Each time the Vikings fell short became more and more frustrating — much like the Bills the past three seasons.
The Buffalo News’ Jay Skurski took issue with Diggs leaving his team behind in the locker room. Diggs’ outburst called into question the health of the locker room, only for him to leave before media members could allow him to comment, Skurski argued.
“It is absolutely week on Stefon Digg’s part to leave the locker room before it’s open to the media,” Skurski tweeted. “He’s a team captain and should uphold his responsibilities in that regard, instead of leaving it up to his teammates.”
However, the Bills locker room expressed its support for Diggs.
Teammate Isaiah McKenzie defended Diggs, saying he is a “great person. He’s a great leader on the field. He works hard… Sometimes he can get a little overboard but I feel like sometimes it’s relevant. Sometimes he can do it because he deserves the ball.”
Tight end Dawson Knox said Diggs is “an ultimate competitor, he wants the ball in his hands because he knows how good he is and we know how good he is. In no way is he a bad teammate, sometimes football is emotional, he’s just a competitor.”
Head coach Sean McDermott said Diggs’ emotion is “what makes him good” and that he “wouldn’t want a guy that doesn’t hurt” after a season-ending playoff loss.
Vikings Fans Reminded of Diggs Final Days in Minnesota
The frustration that surfaced on Sunday is familiar to many Vikings fans who recall animated conversations between Diggs and quarterback Kirk Cousins.
However, the narrative surrounding Diggs’ departure has changed in light of the reports of a “fear-based” culture under Mike Zimmer.
Diggs was rarely a bad teammate in Minnesota for five seasons before he began to act out and force the team to trade him.
The oft-referenced dispute with Cousins in the 2020 NFC Wild Card round win over the New Orleans Saints was much more of a spirited conversation where he wasn’t demanding the ball, but urging Cousins to stick to his game.
Diggs’ emotions getting the better of him may not look good on the surface, but it can also be the smoke signal that Buffalo needs a change if they hope to make it to the Super Bowl.