Thigpen is a seventh-round pick out of Division One-Double-A Coastal Carolina in South Carolina. He impressed coaches with his arm strength and mobility during a rookie minicamp earlier this month. He's the first of Minnesota's eight draft picks this year to sign a contract.
Coastal Carolina started its football program from scratch in 2003, and Thigpen has been its only starting quarterback. He had a 30-and-8 record in four seasons and was named the Big South Conference player of the year last season after leading the Chanticleers to the One-Double-A playoffs.
A raw talent who didn't even play quarterback his senior year in high school, Thigpen could compete with veteran Drew Henson for the No. 3 quarterback spot behind Tarvaris Jackson and Brooks Bollinger.