Vikes Mock; Chapter 1
I am on the record as a proponent of going early and often to the well of offensive linemen in April. As I've examined and constructed a list of other needs for the Vikings, it's staggering. In one season the Skolsters went from being set at basically every position to having way too many holes.
Sad fact is that 8 picks won't fix. The trading around that the Rick Spielman Band will do, won't bring back enough to fix it. Having the first round pick, with as high as it would be without Bradford's play this year, would have helped - but no one pick will get the job done and I don't think we would get a player of even Bradfords 2016 quality in this draft. So it's time to stop wringing our hands and get back to work.
The picks won't get their numerals until some coin flips and other business take place but as it stands, the Vikes selection pool goes like this:
3rd round (from Miami)
4th round (from Miami)
I threw out a list of the possibilities, excluding the line, over on Daily Norseman & got an assist from about 130 people, who I can only assume are super fans since they're still checking in at this time of the year. There were a couple positions which came out with the overwhelming majority of votes.
From highest to lowest the list went:
Defensive Tackle (28%)
Defensive End (2%)
Tight End (0)
So without further adieu, bottoms up.
In the wild weekend of the draft, there are always players who fall down the board. La'el Collins was the most prolific slide down the board that I can remember. Being linked to murder rightfully gave pause to every team round after round but getting a first round talent in the seventh round should have made up for the possibility of him not getting to play because seriously, how often do those guys get cut during camp? Answer - a lot.
So if there's a guy who takes a tumble down the board this year at offensive line, or at any position, the Vikings should grip the table and make the call.
With the flier nature that is the final round of the draft I think that identifying a project quarterback makes sense. There's so much uncertainty about Teddy's future & who knows what Taylor Heinicke has to offer. Pair those two giant question marks with the financial strife that the team is in - which should lead them to move on from Shaun Hill & it's a much more tenuous situation then most may conclude when thinking about it in a cursory fashion.
Another position that I've heard needs bolstering is that of the TE. Kyle Rudolph had a good year. I'm a critic of his but he did produce adequately enough. Beyond him, the group isn't great. Another pass catching tight end would be a nice toy to have but I don't think they actually have to draft one. Their rookie late rounder from UTSA can be a pass catcher & blocker which would create a nice 1 - 2 punch from that position, as long as he stays healthy and works to develop his skills.
So tight end could be a possibility but I think that quarterback makes more sense. Of the many names of guys listed as end of draft quarterbacks, I'd go with Gunner Kiel from Cincy. He had a disappoint college career but still has many of attributes that pushed him to the top of recruiting rankings coming out of high school. As little more then a non negotiable undrafted free agent, getting a guy to develop as the third QB or on the practice squad and then get traded, if not played, would be a good outcome from the current one seventh round pick.