When breaking down the draft in the upcoming weeks, many people target Offensive Tackle Matt Kalil to be drafted 3rd overall to the Minnesota Vikings. Not so fast. The General Manager of the Minnesota Vikings, Rick Spielman, has stated for the last few months that there is much interest in trading down from the 3rd overall pick for a team that is interested in trading up.
If a trade were to happen, many speculate it would involve either the Cleveland Browns or the Miami Dolphins who would attempt to acquire Texas A&M Quarterback Ryan Tannehill. How interesting would the draft be if we saw the three top quarterbacks go within the first three picks of the draft.
A sleeper team to watch out for that could have interest in trading up for Ryan Tannehill are the Kansas City Chiefs. Matt Castle is an average starter in the NFL and Ryan Tannehill could provide some much needed depth at the position. Drafting a quarterback that early in the draft would cause immediate anticipation of seeing him start and could very well cause a quarterback controversy in Kansas City. Don’t be shocked if the Chiefs make this move for Tannehill.
If the Vikings decide to sit on the third overall pick they may also look in the direction of using it on someone other than Matt Kalil. The Vikings still have needs at cornerback, saftey, and wide receiver. There are two notable prospects that can be targeted with this pick. The top cornerback in the 2012 draft being Morris Claiborne out of LSU, and the top wide receiver in the 2012 draft being Justin Blackmon out of Oklahoma State. Either pick would make sense in this situation if they do not want to draft Matt Kalil. Drafting Blackmon would give Christian Ponder another weapon, and Claiborne would provide much needed help in the secondary in a pass happy NFC North.
Bringing it around full circle and finishing off on Matt Kalil, he would make the most sense in this scenario for the Minnesota Vikings. It is understandable that the Vikings GM has interest in trading down and acquiring more picks but passing on a prospect of Kalil’s caliber could be a bad decision. Christian Ponder was the Viking’s first round pick last year, in which many thought was a huge reach. The Vikings must have seen a lot of potential in Ponder to draft him so high. He showed promise in the 2011 season but there is much room for improvement. With that said, Kalil could solidify the Vikings left tackle spot for at least the next ten seasons. It’s hard to say whether Ponder will turn out as the next franchise quarterback for the Vikings but with the proper protection, it drastically improves his chances to show off what he can do in the pocket.
All in all, the Vikings have a handful of options early in this draft and all the questions presented will be answered in two weeks come April 26th. As of right now, BTK 4.0 Mock Draft has the Minnesota Vikings selecting Matt Kalil with the 3rd overall pick.
Written By – David Rantisi- NFL Draft and NFC North Writer
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