2024 Vikings Mock Draft: Vikings Trade Down, Add Help to the Secondary in First Round

Nov 25, 2023; Columbia, South Carolina, USA; Clemson Tigers cornerback Nate Wiggins (2) smiles after breaking up a pass to South Carolina wide receiver Nyck Harbor (8) during the fourth quarter at Williams-Brice Stadium. Clemson won 16-7. Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports

We’re officially a week into the Minnesota Vikings’ offseason.

Over the past couple weeks, we’ve done Vikings mock drafts where Minnesota stays put at No. 11 and where they trade up for a top QB prospect, but we haven’t gone through a mock where the Vikings trade down from No. 11.

While it seems like the most unlikely scenario at this point in time, it certainly isn’t impossible. Today, we’ll take a look at what could happen if Minnesota does decide to trade down and acquire some extra draft capital.

R1, P19: Clemson CB Nate Wiggins

Sep 16, 2023; Clemson, South Carolina; Clemson cornerback Nate Wiggins (2) celebrates with teammates after he returned an interception for a touchdown during the first quarter against Florida Atlantic at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY NETWORK
  • Vikings Trade: No. 11 overall
  • Buccaneers Trade: No. 19 overall, No. 83 overall, 2025 fourth-round pick

Here’s the idea behind this trade. The Buccaneers have won back-to-back NFC South titles, but in all likelihood, they need to figure out their QB spot for the 2024 season. Baker Mayfield, like Kirk Cousins, is set to enter free agency, and Tampa Bay needs to maximize the years that they have left of Mike Evans and Chris Godwin.

They trade up to snag a QB prospect while the Vikings get a third-round pick to utilize later on in the draft and help rebuild their roster for 2024 and make one more run with Cousins as the starter. At 19th overall, the Vikings add Clemson CB Nate Wiggins, who battled through a bone bruise on his knee in 2023, but when he’s been on the field, it’s tough to say that any cornerback in college football has played better.

Minnesota is in a tricky spot in the first round because while they could be in the market for a top QB prospect, they also need to add multiple players on defense as well. This trade would ensure that they can land potential contributors at multiple positions.

R2, P42: Texas DL T’vondre Sweat

Texas Longhorns defensive lineman T’Vondre Sweat (93) celebrates a defensive stop during the Big 12 Championship game against the Oklahoma State Cowboys at AT&T stadium on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023 in Arlington.

The Vikings need some beef in the middle of their defensive line next year. They lost Dalvin Tomlinson last offseason in free agency, and Jonathan Bullard is set to hit free agency in March.

As a result, T’vondre Sweat would be a great option in the second round if QBs like J.J. McCarthy and Bo Nix go off the board before the Vikings are back on the clock. The Texas defensive lineman is a mammoth player at 6’4″ and 340 pounds and found a way to contribute both as a pass-rusher and run-stopper with the Longhorns. In 2023, he put together eight tackles for loss and a pair of sacks.

R3, P83: Western Kentucky WR Malachi Corley

WKU’s Malachi Corley runs in for a touchdown against UTEP on Nov. 4, 2023 at the Sun Bowl. (Alberto Silva Fernandez / El Paso Times)

A speedy receiver who can consistently contribute to the Vikings offense in the passing game is needed to take pressure off Jordan Addison and Justin Jefferson. Malachi Corley has 4.4-speed and was a major part of Western Kentucky’s offense over the past two seasons.

Corley’s sharp route-running skills make him a threat in the red zone as well (caught 11 TD passes in each of the 2022 and 2023 seasons). Western Kentucky has sent players to the NFL in each of the past two drafts, and Corley makes it three straight years that a Hilltopper is selected.

R4, P108: South Carolina QB Spencer Rattler

Dec 30, 2022; Jacksonville, FL, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks quarterback Spencer Rattler (7) throws the ball against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in the second quarter in the 2022 Gator Bowl at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Reper-USA TODAY Sports.

There was a point in time where it seemed like Spencer Rattler was destined to be the next great quarterback prospect. However, a disappointing season at Oklahoma in 2021 derailed that, and he transferred to South Carolina where he has remained ever since.

Rattler may not be a generational player at the position, but he has plenty of skills that could translate to the NFL level. His arm talent is off the charts, and if he can reign in a few bad decisions every now and again, he still has a chance to be productive as a pro.

R4, P130: Notre Dame LB Marist Liufau

Sep 30, 2023; Durham, North Carolina, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish linebacker Marist Liufau (8) fends off a block by Duke Blue Devils offensive lineman Justin Pickett (77) during the second half at Wallace Wade Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Marist Liufau struggled with injuries during the early years of his collegiate career, but he has been a starter and completely injury free for two seasons now in Notre Dame’s defense. Liufau’s motor is something that should be desired by any NFL team, and despite some lackluster size at the LB position, this more than makes him worth a selection in the third day.

R5, P156: Maryland OL Delmar Glaze

Oct 8, 2022; College Park, Maryland, USA; Maryland Terrapins running back Roman Hemby (24) celebrates with offensive lineman Delmar Glaze (74) after scoring a second half touchdown during the second half against the Maryland Terrapins at SECU Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Dalton Risner is set to hit free agency this offseason, and early projections have him snagging a pretty hefty contract in March. If he and the Vikings end up being too far away in terms of a contract, interior offensive line help is certainly a need for Minnesota in the draft.

Delmar Glaze played the tackle positions at Maryland, but he is a player that could end up kicking inside to a guard spot at the NFL level. Regardless, the Vikings need help across the o-line, and he is a prospect worth taking a chance on with his combination of size and athleticism.

R5, P161: Wake Forest EDGE Jasheen Davis

Vikings Mock Draft
Nov 12, 2022; Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA; Wake Forest Demon Deacons defensive lineman Jasheen Davis (30) reacts to sacking North Carolina Tar Heels quarterback Drake Maye (10) during the first half at Truist Field. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Jasheen Davis will need to bulk up a bit to be a consistent contributor at the NFL level, but he brings plenty of speed off the edge that should get him drafted as a high-ceiling prospect. Davis continuously found ways to get after quarterbacks at Wake Forest, and his tenacity is something that any NFL team should be able to get behind.

R6, P178: Washington State S Jaden Hicks

Nov 11, 2023; Berkeley, California, USA; Washington State Cougars defensive back Jaden Hicks (25) before the game against the California Golden Bears at California Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Brian Flores loved utilizing his safeties throughout the 2023 season and Harrison Smith will be entering his age-35 season. Do these twin facts push Minnesota toward adding a safety? Jaden Hicks is a fierce tackler at the safety position who does not back down from contributing in run defense. He seems like a very similar prospect to Josh Metellus when the Vikings selected him back in 2020.

R6, P189: Texas A&M WR Moose Muhammad

Sep 2, 2023; College Station, Texas, USA; Texas A&M Aggies wide receiver Moose Muhammad III (7) runs the ball during the fourth quarter New Mexico Lobos at Kyle Field. Mandatory Credit: Maria Lysaker-USA TODAY Sports

Again, the Vikings could use somebody at the wide receiver position to help stretch the field out of the slot.

Moose Muhammad has been playing that exact role in the Texas A&M offense, especially in 2022 when he averaged 16.1 yards per reception. He has a knack for hauling in the deep passes and has the wiggle to evade tacklers downfield.

Editor’s Note: Statistics for this article were found via Sports Reference CFB and Pro Football Focus.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of PurplePTSD.com. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.