After the 254th pick in the NFL draft is gone, the balance of the draft class is left homeless and despondent that their phones never received so much as a single call.
But the remaining undrafted free agents in this year’s draft aren’t necessarily untalented players. In fact, some of them are rather underrated, which is partly the reason why they went unnoticed.
Today, I want to take a look at some UDFAs that the Vikings should target, if for nothing more, than to have some form of insurance if their current draft picks don’t work out.
Well that and the fact that you never want to pass up potential talent.
Let’s take a look at who’s available.
The speculated reason behind Toliver not receiving a call from pro teams is the fact that he was simply overmatched in a heavy pool of receivers.
But Toliver is a sound talent with considerable size and speed who flourishes in a vertical role.
With the Vikings receiver dilemma and the transition to a double tight end oriented scheme, the Vikes could use a flashy guy whose primary responsibility could be a deep ball threat that creates mis-matches, since Bernard Berrian never did fill those shoes.
Depth, depth, depth! The Vikings, more than anything right now, need depth for the secondary plain and simple.
Many feel—including myself—that if Chris Cook can remain healthy, he’ll be the contributor he should’ve been last year. But surgeries to both of his knees do raise a few flags, and the rest of the pack isn’t enough in numbers to show the team has solid depth.
Jones is a multi-tool player in the sense that he can play against the run, move to the slot and even play as a nickel back which would bode extremely well for the Vikings.
The knock on him is a lack of refinement, but that really doesn’t matter too much these days with the right coaching.
I was a little surprised Devine wasn’t picked up given his ability to get lost at the line of scrimmage and his extraordinary elusiveness.
Devine is knocked for his size which many claim “won’t match up well in the pros,” and he is also a bit substandard as a blocking back; two aspects the Vikings DO NOT need in a RB.
Devine is, however, a shifty change of pace back who has great acceleration and quality pass catching abilities which are two characteristics the Vikings COULD use in a third back.
In his junior year, the guy who everyone thought wasn’t ready for the pros rushed for 1,933 yards and 24 touchdowns on 173 carries.
The Vikings really should grab this guy if for nothing more than exceptional depth.
Williams was considered one of the best skilled athletes coming out of high school, only to follow that accolade up with being considered one of the best big-play making defensive backs in the country.
Then he broke his leg, and the scouts went running like cockroaches after abruptly turning on the kitchen light.
I get it, a prospect that already broke his fibula has liability written all over him, but that doesn’t mean he is permanently damaged goods nor does it mean his skills no longer have worthiness.
The Vikings, again, need secondary depth.
But the Vikings could also use a big-play athlete like Williams if they are willing to chance against the injury, which is why they should target the guy.
Form a business aspect, the Vikings could use the leg as bargaining leverage to their advantage as a protective buffer.
There are plenty of other reasons why the Vikings should be targeting UDFAs, and one example of that is the future.
The Vikings scored two quality defensive ends/tackle hybrids in Christian Ballard and D’Aundre Reed, and they do have the Williams boys, but not a lot beyond that other than developmental talent and the regular everyday starters.
Parker is a player who excels at the three-technique and offers enough balances and lower body gravity to even participate in an aggressive 4-3 role with the right development.
The Vikings could find a diamond in the rough here and solve for the long-term by targeting this overlooked prospect.
While I admit reaching for a Division II receiver who teeters between second and third on the team would be a severe reach, but the payoff would be huge if it all worked out in the end.
Lockette is an interesting individual.
His strengths are rather impressive being as athletic as he is and as fast as he is, but his weaknesses include sporadic lazy hands and the simple fact that he never led his Division II team in receptions.
But if you think about adding another potential developmental slot project to the mix and take into account that if the kid does latch on to the opportunity, the Vikings could wind up with a tremendously talented receiver even in a depth role.
Look, most UDFAs wind up being developmental projects anyway, and the majority of them usually provide quality depth if utilized properly, so it isn’t AS much of a stretch as it appears for the Vikings to bring him on.
Got a player in mind I didn’t mention guys? Leave your nomination below and get the ball rolling. Then come check out my latest Fantasy Sleeper nomination if you want!