Minnesota Vikings: Top Needs and Fits in the 2014 Draft

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Minnesota Vikings: Top Needs and Fits in the 2014 Draft
Butch Dill/Associated Press

It's deja vu all over again for the Minnesota Vikings

The team has plenty of holes to plug—almost all of them on the defensive side of the ballbut the position that is getting the most attention is quarterback. Rewind the tape to 2011—for you younger kids, that's a phrase that predates even the now-old technology of DVD players.

That's the year the Vikings also needed to find their next quarterback. Quarterback Brett Favre had followed up his 12-4 record in 2009 with a less-than-stellar performance that saw his consecutive streak of starting games end at 298.  The Vikings finished 6-10 in 2010 and needed to find a quarterback. 

Minnesota had the 12th pick in the draft, and seemingly under extreme pressure, they reached and selected Christian Ponder. Ponder was the fourth quarterback taken in the draft that year, after Cam Newton (first overall), Jake Locker (eighth) and Blaine Gabbert (10th). 

At the time, the move seemed like a stretch. To Ponder's defense, he has been better than Locker and Gabbert, but at the same time, he hasn't been as good as the two quarterbacks taken in the second round—Andy Dalton and Colin Kaepernick

This year, the Vikings have the eighth pick in the draft. According to most draft projections, like Walter Football and NFL Draft Scout, there are only three quarterbacks that are clear-cut first-round selections. With Houston, Jacksonville, Cleveland and Oakland all possibly looking to draft a quarterback ahead of the Vikings, the best fit in the first round might not be a quarterback.

That doesn't mean there won't be any impact players that the Vikings can use when their turn comes to draft.  

The Vikings need to find replacements for defensive end Jared Allen and defensive tackle Kevin Williams. They also need to find a couple of linebackers to play next to Chad Greenway as well as an upgrade at cornerback. 

Here's a look at several players that best fit the Vikings' needs heading into the 2014 season. 

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