2012 NFL Draft: 4 Reasons Vikings Must Draft Matt Kalil
The Minnesota Vikings offense is looking for someone to resuscitate them back to life. USC’s offensive tackle Matt Kalil is the man for the job. Scouts are labeling Kalil as the best offensive tackle prospect in 2012 and one of the best choices for the Vikings.
Kalil’s coverage of the blind side is just where the Vikings need to start rebuilding and here’s why.
Biggest Bang for the Buck
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Offensive star positions are only as good as their supporting line. And with the Vikings looking to build talent around their stars, they have to recruit the best.
Offensive linemen have a hand in each play and are expected to make the big plays possible. The best talent is needed to fill those slots.
With a 6'7'', 295-pound frame, Kalil can easily contend with some of the top offensive players in the NFL. However, he is still young enough that he has time to gain some leverage and peak in the next couple of seasons.
He has exuded talent in his career at USC, but with a little coaching in the NFL will become an elite, bruising tackle by his prime career time.
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A player’s intangibles are just as important as his abilities on the field.
As team captain for USC, Kalil proved he is a leader on and off the field. He has a contagious spirit and dedicated work ethic that resonate in his teammates. He is the hardest worker in the weight room and motivates his team to work just as hard. His presence on the field causes fear to opponents. They know when he is on the field.
The Vikings need that kind of presence on the field. It will make opponents take them as serious competitors and push the team to dominate the game.
A struggling offense can certainly use a player like him to lead and look up to. The Vikings could see success with a leader like Kalil.
Relieves Offensive Pressure
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Kalil is the type of player the Vikings could rally the team around. His hard work and dedication on the field could have the Vikings breathing new life.
The offensive line fell apart in 2011. Allowing 49 sacks for the year, 30 on rookie quarterback Christian Ponder, is not going to win games. Adding Kalil to the offense will cause the sack problem to come down and bring a better performance from Ponder. His ability to protect the QBs blind side is paralleled to that of Baltimore Raven Michael Oher.
In addition, Kalil can relieve some pain for the backs. Kalil has been able to make space for the running backs when he reaches the secondary. Star running backs Adrian Peterson and Toby Gerhart could make use of the space for positive yardage and avoid further knee injuries.
With Kalil on the line, Vikings fans could see a stronger, more powerful offense in 2012.
Dominates the Field
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Kalil has proven to be a key component to the USC line. A large portion of USC quarterback Matt Barkley’s success is accredited to the work of Kalil on his blind side. When you stand out on a team with consistently top NFL recruits, you know you're doing something right.
Once he takes off the ball, he is locked in. He has a level of determination that proves to be a problem for his defenders. The strength he has is matched with his towering size and makes him a nightmare on the field. This is what sets him apart as the best.
His ability to pressure his blocker, make the space and keep the quarterback comfortable in the pocket make him a force in all aspects. Kalil is a master of managing the field around him.
He will need some work on his lateral movement and keeping his knees bent. With steady NFL coaching, he will become the top notch tackle NFL lines want.