Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Via Bleed Purple Blog: Vikings NFL Draft Preview

In year's past I've done a NFL Mock Draft, and those have always been spot on...

This year though I'm lazy...don't have enough time I'm bringing in a good buddy of mine, a Viking obsessed expert in Andrew from Bleed Purple blog. (GO TO HIS SITE!) He graciously lent us this post that he posted on his site yesterday for us to share with the STOB'ers.   Check out his site for Vikings news and more and hopefully we'll be doing some draft review, including Andrew, next week sometime. Until then, enjoy his analysis.

Can you believe it's almost here! The Minnesota Vikings head into this year’s draft with the 23rd and 25th pick in the first round. Look for the Vikings to make some trades Thursday night to move back and get more picks in the 2nd and 3rd rounds. This is a very deep draft at certain positions and the Vikings must find value in rounds 1-4. They could also move up to grab a guy like Tavon Austin, but I don't see the Vikings trading draft picks to move up. Areas of needs are WR, CB, S, LB, DT and you can never use enough depth on the offensive line. Here are some guys I see the Vikings willing to take at 23rd or the 25th pick.

WR Cordarrelle Patterson (Tennessee)-If he is there at #23, we can't pass on a guy with this much upside. Patterson is a playmaker who can stretch the field and also has the speed to create separation at the line of scrimmage in the slot. He makes the loss of Percy Harvin hurt far less. 

CB Xavier Rhodes (Florida St.)-He is a guy who can also fill a huge whole in this secondary with a loss of Antoine Winfield. Our cornerback position needs help and Xavier can step right in and make a difference.

LB Kevin Minter (LSU)-Minter isn't flashy, but the bottom line he can tackle, cover and makes outstanding reads. He could be a franchise type middle linebacker the Vikings need.

 LB Arthur Brown (Kansas St.)-Arthur is all over draft boards and some have him going in the mid-1st round and some have him going mid-late second round. I don't know about you, but I love this guy. He can flat out make plays and has the speed to bring pressure and also has the ability to drop back in coverage. The Minnesota Vikings need a linebacker who is has this versatility.

DT Sylvester Williams (North Carolina)-I don't know if he will be there at #23, a lot of teams are starting to fall in love with Williams. He is an outstanding defensive tackle who can create havoc in the middle. Maybe the Vikings will get lucky and have another "Williams Wall"! He also would be a replacement for an aging Kevin Williams.

WR DeAndre Hopkins (Clemson)-Hopkins is a deep threat who can adjust well to the ball and make big plays. He does lack the ability to break on cuts, but does find holes in coverage.

Guys I would enjoy seeing the Vikings getting a chance to grab in the 2nd or 3rd round.

S Matt Elam (Florida)-I think Matt Elam would be a great addition and would be great to see playing next to Harrison Smith. He lacks height, but Elam is a guy who can play up on the line and rush the QB and also can be a big time hitter in run support and in coverage. 

WR Keenan Allen (Cal)-I like Keenan and I also liked him much more a month ago. I wouldn't hate drafting him; I just think he has the potential of being a bust in the NFL. I hope I am wrong!

S D.J. Swearinger (South Carolina)-If you can't land Elam, take D.J. He does things very similar to Elam but just isn't Matt Elam.

CB Tyrann Mathieu (LSU)-High Risk = High Reward! I know I would love to get "Honey Badger"; I don't care about his past. The guy can flat out play the game of football! Yes, he may have a lot of issues off the field, but I guarantee you when Sunday comes he will show up to play! If he had no issues off the field, he is a top 5 pick! 

DT John Jenkins (Georgia)-Nearly 350 lbs., he plugs the middle and moves pretty well. Look at this beast, if he can provide run support I don't know who can.

Sleepers we can get late in the draft

CB B.w. Webb (William & Mary)-Talk about a shutdown corner, Webb is known for his great coverage skills and would be a great addition to the Vikings secondary.

WR Ryan Swope (Teaxs A&M)-Replacement for Percy Harvin, he has the competitive nature and isn't scared to work the middle of the field.

LB Kevin Reddick (North Carolina)-Reddick is a hard hitting linebacker who has great speed and closing ability. He can make big plays as a strong run defender and is NFL ready.

DT Nicholas Willams (Samford)-Big frame guy who is raw and needs development, but can be a big presence up front and has the ability to be a solid run stopper.

Overall the Minnesota Vikings need to hit on draft picks and need to fill some holes both offensively and defensively. Look for Rick Spielman to be creative and make some trades again this year to improve this roster. Spielman could also look at trading RB Toby Gerhart if the right value is there. It should be an exciting weekend and look I look forward to the Vikings to be aggressive and draft players that can step right in and make a difference immediately.

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