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And now we get to the meat of the subject matter: The quarterback situation.
The Top 30 at Winter Park has concluded and the Vikings sound confident they know exactly where they are going to go in the draft, and who they are going to target.
The two hottest positions are quarterback and defensive end.
Vikings vice president of player personnel said: "Knowing where we’re going to be at, there will be probably five positions that I know we’ll look at our 12th pick and then we’ll sort that out," he said. "Like I said, there are a lot of other needs to fill at that 12th position if it’s not a quarterback. I can tell you this: We’re going to take the best player available when it comes to our pick. That I know.” – Star Tribune
Out of that comment, one could easily assume the Vikings are going to target a quarterback with their first pick, and many feel that the Vikings really like Washington’s Jake Locker.
But in a recent news report found on CBSSports.com, Panthers owner Jerry Richardson is to completely sold on Auburn’s Cam Newton which could change how the Vikings do things if, perhaps, Newton was available.
I don’t see them going after the shotgun oriented Blaine Gabbert, and I don’t see Jake Locker even being available by the Vikings 12th pick.
What I do see is this: Andy Dalton possibly in the second, or Ricky Stanzi in the fourth.
But the NFL draft aside, the Vikings could still land themselves a quality veteran once everything smooths over with.
There was a little rumor floating around that the Vikings were highly interested in ex-Titans’ quarterback Vince Young, but it appears that teams just aren’t simply sold on the fact that he can handle a starting role according to the National Football Post.
There is, however, a new rumor floating around that Donovan McNabb could become a Viking, and one reporter believes it just makes the most sense:
“I think the team that makes the most sense for Donovan McNabb is Minnesota. The compensation that makes the most sense is a conditional fourth-round pick in 2012 that could rise to a three if McNabb starts 12 games this year. Or something like that. The Redskins can get partial payment (very partial) back for the move Mike Shanahan wishes he never made. The Vikings can sleep better at night knowing they don't have to rely on Joe Webb with a suspect offensive line and a veteran defense as they try to make one last playoff run with this core. McNabb can be happy knowing he has one more chance to take a contender deep into the playoffs. But if this happens, he'd better take full advantage of it, because it might be his last shot with a contender.” Peter King SI.com
I think the answer here is that, no, the Vikings will not draft a quarterback in the first two rounds. They will likely target other specific needed areas in the early goings, trade for a veteran like McNabb, and target Stanzi in the fourth.
Prognosis: The draft will solve the young arm issue, but not the veteran presence the Vikings need.