Minnesota Vikings

Building a 2012 NFL Draft Big Board for the Minnesota Vikings

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - DECEMBER 4: Leslie Frazier, head coach of the Minnesota Vikings looks on in the first quarter against the Denver Broncos on December 4, 2011 at Mall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images
Andrew GardaFeatured ColumnistApril 5, 2012

We've gone through the rest of the division—Packers, Lions and Bears (OH MY)—so now we wrap things up with a big board specifically for the Vikings.

We've already done a full Vikings Mock and while I have reevaluated my position on the offensive line, the Vikings can really go Best Pick Available with something approaching impunity.

The only positions they shouldn't make too early are running back and quarterback.

As such, expect to see a lot of familiar names on the top 50, though not always in the order you'd expect. Remember, while a player may be a higher graded prospect, sometimes he won't be as high on a team's board because they simply don't have as much of a need there.

With that in mind, here's my Vikings Big Board.

 

1) Matt Kalil, OT, USC     

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 25: Offensive lineman Matt Kalil of USC looks on during the 2012 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 25, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

2)  Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU

3) Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

4) Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

5) David DeCastro, OG, Stanford

6) Melvin Ingram, OLB, South Carolina  

7) Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State

8) Luke Kuechly, ILB, Boston College

9) Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina

10)  Reilly Reiff, OT, Iowa

11) Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama  

12) Michael Brockers, DT, LSU

13)    Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame

14) Mark Barron, S, Alabama

15) Stephon Gilmore, CB, South Carolina 

16) Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford  

17) Whitney Mercilus, DE/OLB, Illinois

CHAMPAIGN, IL - OCTOBER 15:  Whitney Mercilus #85 of the Illinois Fighting Illini rushes against Jack Mewhort #74 of the Ohio State Buckeyes at Memorial Stadium on October 15, 2011 in Champaign, Illinois. Ohio State defeated Illinois 17-7.  (Photo by Jona
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

18) Nick Perry, DE/OLB, USC

19)  Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor

20) Devon Still, DT, Penn State

21) Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis 

22) Mike Adams, OT, Ohio State

23)  Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin

24) Cordy Glenn, OG, Georgia

25) Courtney Upshaw, DE, Alabama

26) Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama

27) Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford

28) Whitney Mercilus, OLB, Illinois

29)  Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska

30) Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State

31) Andre Branch, DE/OLB, Clemson

32)  Lavonte David, OLB, Nebraska

33)  Harrison Smith, SS, Notre Dame

34) Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech

35) Kendall Reyes, DT, UCONN

36) Kevin Zeitler, OG, Wisconsin

37) Zach Brown, OLB, North Carolina  

38) Doug Martin, RB, Boise State 

39)   Vinny Curry, DE, Marshall

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 27: Linebackers Dont'a Hightower (right) and Courtney Upshaw of Alabama look on during the 2012 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 27, 2012 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

40) Dont'a Hightower, ILB, Alabama

41) Shae McClellin, OLB, Boise State

42) Mohammad Sanu, WR, Rutgers

43) Trumaine Johnson, CB, Montana

44) Brian Crick, WR, Appalachian State

45) Jared Crick, DE, Nebraska

46) David Wilson, RB, Virginia Tech

47) Brandon Boykin, CB Georgia

48) Josh Robinson, CB, Central Florida 

49) Cam Johnson, DE, Virginia
 

50) Marvin Jones, WR, California 

 

As you can see, the Vikings board should have a nice cross-section of positions.

Trent Richardson is on the list and while I said the Vikings need not go early on a running back, you never know how the board will fall. Devaluing running backs—even elite ones like Richardson could be—makes for some big drops.

It's unlikely he makes it back to the Vikings, but if he did, they'd have to jump.

Otherwise, they'll set their sights on lots of offensive line help, linebackers, and most importantly defensive backs. There is a fair amount of talent in those areas, so going best pick available once you have a guy like Kalil out of the way is a pretty good idea.

The Vikings should be able to find good value which also fills a need at any position in the draft, so we'll have to wait and see how it all plays out on draft day.

  


 

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