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NFL Draft Needs: Vikings

Thursday, April 14, 2016


Evan Silva (@EvanSilva) is the Senior Football Editor for Rotoworld's NFL Page, and Josh Norris (@JoshNorris) leads Rotoworld's college football and NFL draft coverage. Together, they're breaking down every team's biggest needs and offering potential draft-day solutions.


For a breakdown on every team, check out the team-by-team draft preview schedule.

 

No. 1 Team Need: Wide Receiver

 

 

Silva's Analysis

 

GM Rick Spielman stole Stefon Diggs in the fifth round of last year's draft, but the Vikings' receiver depth chart is otherwise lackluster. Jarius Wright is a slot guy only, and 2014 stretch-run star Charles Johnson lost his job to Diggs last season. Cordarrelle Patterson has maxed out as a return specialist. To complement 6-foot, 195-pound Diggs, Minnesota could use a big, physical run-after-catch receiver capable of turning Teddy Bridgewater's high-percentage passes into bigger gains.

 

No. 2 Team Need: Safety


Silva's Analysis


The Vikings have a number of in-house options to play snaps at strong safety, including Andrew Sendejo, ex-Titan Michael Griffin and 37-year-old CB/S Terence Newman. What Minnesota does not have is a clear-cut solution opposite FS Harrison Smith. Coach Mike Zimmer tends to value versatility from his safeties, although he has that already in Smith.

 

No. 3 Team Need: Offensive Tackle


Silva's Analysis

 
Spielman has done well to stockpile starting options and quality depth at guard, center and right tackle. The Vikings don't necessarily have glaring immediate needs on the offensive line, but they need to start thinking about life after LT Matt Kalil. The fourth pick in the 2012 draft, perennially disappointing Kalil is severely overpaid ($11.09 million) relative to his on-field play, and is not under contract beyond 2016. The Vikings may also pursue linebacker help with 33-year-old WLB Chad Greenway on his last legs and free agent pickup Emmanuel Lamur best suited for a situational role.

 

 

Norris' Mock Draft


Round 1 (23): WR Laquon Treadwell, Ole Miss - There is positive buzz around practically every top receiver in this class (Josh Doctson, Michael Thomas, Will Fuller) ... except for Treadwell. This would be a great landing spot for the Ole Miss star, who is super physical both before and after the catch. He is the type of possession receiver teams should target.

 

Round 2 (54): LB Deion Jones, LSU - I would be excited to see a linebacking trio of Eric Kendricks, Anthony Barr and Jones. The LSU prospect has plenty of closing speed and displays awareness in coverage to process his assignments.

 

Round 3 (86): S K.J. Dillon, West Virginia - Dillon can do a little bit of everything. He showed a willingness to attack ball carriers near the line of scrimmage during Senior Bowl week. Dillon also has experience lining up across from slot receivers.

 

Round 4 (121): T Kyle Murphy, Stanford - I liked Murphy quite a bit before Senior Bowl week, but he really struggled when asked to practice at right tackle. He might solely be a left-side offensive lineman. And the more I watch, the more I notice Murphy has balance issues when mirroring or sustaining.

 

Round 5 (160): FB Dan Vitale, Northwestern - Are you looking for the next Jim Kleinsasser? Vitale is a great athlete, very good receiver and needs to improve his run blocking.

 

Round 6 (180): C Austin Blythe, Iowa - Both of the Vikings’ centers are over the age of 30. Blythe is a very good positional blocker and is one of the best at lining up second level blocks.

 

Round 7 (240): WR Robby Anderson, Temple - Some teams will evaluate Anderson as a corner, some at receiver. He produced a great performance against Houston this season.

 

Round 7 (244): DL Trevon Coley, FAU - There’s some poor man’s Sharrif Floyd in Coley’s game, but I feel like I’m the only one recognizing it.

 

 

 

Vikings Current Offensive Depth Chart

 

QB: Teddy Bridgewater

 

RB: Adrian Peterson

 

WR: Stefon Diggs

 

WR: Jarius Wright

 

TE: Kyle Rudolph

 

TE: MyCole Pruitt

 

LT: Matt Kalil

 

LG: Alex Boone

 

C: John Sullivan

 

RG: Brandon Fusco

 

RT: Andre Smith

 

Vikings Current Defensive Depth Chart

 

RE: Everson Griffen

 

LE: Brian Robison

 

DT: Linval Joseph

 

DT: Sharrif Floyd

 

MLB: Eric Kendricks

 

SLB: Anthony Barr

 

WLB: Chad Greenway

 

RCB: Xavier Rhodes

 

LCB: Terence Newman

 

FS: Harrison Smith

 

SS: Andrew Sendejo



Evan Silva is a senior football editor for Rotoworld.com. He can be found on Twitter .
Email :Evan Silva



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