The Vikings have been very disappointed with Sharrif Floyd, who hasn't been able to stay healthy. Their run defense suffered last year as a result. It's been better so far, but they could still opt to address the situation in the 2018 NFL Draft.
Trenton Thompson had some medical issues in the past, but he has seemingly gotten over them. He's a dominant player, however, so he could still sneak into the first round.
Rd. 2, Pk. 20
Duke Ejiofor, DE/3-4DE, Wake Forest
Brian Robison announced that he's going to retire after the 2018 season, so the Vikings should draft a defensive end to play behind Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter in 2019 and beyond.
The 6-foot-4, 304-pound Feeney is a well-balanced blocker. He has the strength to contribute as a run blocker and was effective in pass protection for the Hoosiers. According to Indiana, Feeney had allowed only one sack in 2,719 snaps - 37 career games - entering 2016. The senior missed a lot of time in 2016 with a concussion and also had to play some right tackle. For the NFL, however, Feeney projects as a power guard.
Rd. 3, Pk. 3
Kareem Hunt, RB, Toledo
The Vikings grab a long-term starting running back.
Hunt averaged 5.6 yards per carry in 2016 for 1,475 yards with 10 touchdowns. He also made 41 receptions for 403 yards and a touchdown. Hunt (5-10, 208) was excellent at the Senior Bowl, using his speed to slash through the defense. He was very impressive as a receiver out of the backfield, too. Hunt doesn't have the size to be an every-down back in the NFL, but he could be a dangerous weapon as a complementary back and be an asset in passing situations.
Rd. 3, Pk. 3
Pat Elflein, G/C, Ohio State
The Vikings grab some offensive line talent, and they've shown interest in Elflein.
Elflein was a solid blocker in 2016 for Ohio State at center. That looks like his best position for the NFL. The 6-foot-3, 303-pounder played well in 2015. He was an excellent run blocker, opening holes for Ezekiel Elliott. Elflein is also reliable in pass protection. As a sophomore, he was a starter at left and right guard while doing a superb job of helping the Buckeyes to feature a powerful rushing attack.
Rd. 4, Pk. 4
Larry Ogunjobi, DT, Charlotte
The Vikings could use some interior defensive line depth given the uncertain future for Sharrif Floyd.
Ogunjobi (6-2, 304) turned in four seasons of solid production for Charlotte, including his senior year, when he notched 65 tackles with 13.5 tackles for a loss, three sacks and two passes broken up. Ogunjobi had 62 tackles with 2.5 sacks as a junior and five sacks as a sophomore. He put together a good week of practice at the Senior Bowl.
Rd. 4, Pk. 4
Damontae Kazee, CB, San Diego State
The Vikings could use some cornerback depth given the age of Terrance Newman and losing Captain Munneryln. Minnesota has shown interest in Kazee.
In 2016, Kazee recorded 65 tackles with eight passes broken up and seven interceptions. The 5-foot-10, 183-pounder didn't impress at the Senior Bowl, however. Kazee was the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year for with eight interceptions, 75 tackles, and seven passes broken up. He had 58 tackles, 13 breakups, and an interception as a sophomore. Kazee almost entered the 2016 NFL Draft, but the fourth-round grade from the NFL Advisory Board probably was a big reason why he wisely decided to return for his senior year.
The Vikings could consider taking a defensive tackle given the uncertainty around Sharrif Floyd. <br> <br>
Vea (6-5, 332) was a load at the point of attack for Washington in 2016. He totaled 39 tackles with 6.5 tackles for a loss, five sacks, one force fumble and two passes batted on the season. Vea has a serious combination of size, length, strength, and quickness at the point of attack.
<i> 2017 NFL Mock Draft Pick (as of 9/30): Carlos Watkins, DT (Round 2) </i>
The Vikings may decide to upgrade over Matt Kalil in a year or two. <br> <br>
Hyatt has played well in 2016 thus far. The 6-foot-5, 295-pounder had an impressive freshman season as the blind-side protector for Deshaun Watson. Not only did he help protect Watson, Hyatt did a nice job of opening holes for Wayne Gallman. Hyatt could use more strength for the NFL, but he is still a young player with time to develop.
<u> <i> Pick change; previously Saquon Barkley, RB </i> </u>
Projected Finish: 8-8 (2nd in NFC North)
2017 First Picks: RB Dalvin Cook (2-41) and C Pat Elflein (3-70)
Measurements: 6'6" and 288 lbs.
2016 Statistics: 4.81 yards per rush (27 TD's) and 32 sacks against team
Connor Williams is one of the best tackles in college football, and would be an immediate upgrade for the Minnesota Vikings. Williams could start on either side, but I'd like to see him go to the left. Riley Reiff, recent signee, played in the best form of his career last year on the right side. Move him back, plug the rookie in on the blind side, and watch it happen.
The Vikings could use more wide receiver talent, especially since Laquon Treadwell did next to nothing as a rookie. <br> <br>
I'm not sure that Washington will end up grading out as a first-rounder, but he could have that potential because he has been a big-play receiver for the Cowboys. In 2016, Washington made 71 receptions for 1,380 yards and 10 touchdowns. As a sophomore, he snagged 53 passes for 1,087 yards with 10 scores. Washington (6-1, 205) has decent size and can stretch teams vertically with his speed.
The Vikings could sue a safety to pair with Harrison James. <br> <br>
James totaled 11 tackles through two games in 2016 before sustaining a knee injury. He had been playing well for Florida State. Entering the 2016 season, there was a lot of hype that James was an elite player and perhaps the best defensive player in college football. As a freshman in 2015, he had a strong debut with 91 tackles, 9.5 tackles for a loss, 4.5 sacks, four passes broken up and two forced fumbles, but zero interceptions. The 6-foot-3, 211-pounder has a great athletic skill set. <br> <br>
<u> <i> Pick change; previously Parris Campbell, WR </i> </u>