The Top Three Items on Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s Checklist for the 2024 NFL Draft

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Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s checklist contains some massively important items. And no matter what happens, the 2024 NFL Draft is going to tell us a lot about where the Vikings are heading.

Adofo-Mensah is sitting on nine draft picks and a roster with needs aplenty. How does the GM navigate his available resources to best equip his team for success for 2024 and beyond? He’s been asking himself some form of that question for a little while, so one wonders how prominently these three items feature on his personal checklist.

Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s Checklist in the 2024 NFL Draft

Quarterback Clarity

Jan 7, 2024; Santa Clara, California, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Sam Darnold (14) celebrates after a play during the second quarter against the Los Angeles Rams at Levi’s Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

In all likelihood, the Vikings are going to get to the end of Thursday, April 25th with a new QB of the future.

If, however, there is some sort of curveball involving no new QB, the item will still get checked off. Clarity is going to arrive no matter what. Failing to bring in a great college quarterback will simply reveal that Sam Darnold is locked and loaded for QB1 duty. Plus, Nick Mullens and Jaren Hall will have gained added job security.

There would be no shortage of detractors and doomsday prophets in Minnesota if there isn’t a promising passer added into the fold. And while some of that criticism could certainly be warranted, there will at least be added insight about where things are heading at the game’s most important position.

Beef Up the Trenches

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Sep 17, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; The Minnesota Vikings offense lines up against the Pittsburgh Steelers defense during the third quarter at Heinz Field. The Steelers won 26-9. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Neither the offensive line nor the defensive line are finished products.

Of the two, the o-line is in a better spot. A game could be played tomorrow and the Vikings could trot out a Christian Darrisaw/Blake Brandel/Garrett Bradbury/Ed Ingram/Brian O’Neill fivesome. Completely without flaw? By no means, and yet it’s a crew that could provide above-average play.

The defensive line, in contrast, could get itself in trouble. Harrison Phillips is the lone player with a proven track record of being a strong NFL starter. Every other option – Jonathan Bullard, Jerry Tillery, Jaquelin Roy, and Jonah Williams – has something to prove. Even just the basic numbers suggest that more work lies ahead; just five defensive linemen isn’t near enough.

So, look for at least a single pick to get sunk into the OL and at least a single pick (but probably two) to get put into the DL.

Round Out the Competition at Overlooked Positions

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Dec 4, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings linebacker Brian Asamoah II (33) leaps over the celebration pile late during the fourth quarter after an interception by safety Camryn Bynum (24) off New York Jets quarterback Mike White (5) sealed the victory at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

If Brian Asamoah rebounds from a tough sophomore season, then the linebacker spot is looking pretty good. There’s no guarantee that occurs, though. Would adding another linebacker be in order?

So, too, would some more competition at corner help. The end of the season featured some pretty major struggles at the position, a reality that flowed from both injury and players taking a step back with their level of play. Again, more depth and competition won’t hurt.

And then one thinks of T.J. Hockenson’s injury recovery and the potential for adding another tight end. K.J. Osborn is now with the Patriots, so there’s going to be a competition at WR3; draft someone to intensify the competition?

Brian Flores would be in favor of adding more edge rushers – a position Adofo-Mensah has never drafted – and Matt Daniels would welcome another kicker – a position Adofo-Mensah has never drafted.

Keep an eye on the margins of the roster. Certain spots like QB and the DL have a blaring siren overhead announcing a need for help. Other spots like LB, CB, WR, EDGE, and K are more muted but would still benefit from a youthful infusion of talent.

The 2024 NFL Draft will be taking place in Detroit, Michigan. The event begins on April 25th.

K. Joudry is the Senior Editor for Vikings Territory and PurplePTSD. He has been covering the Vikings full time since the summer of 2021. He can be found on Twitter and as a co-host for Notes from the North, a humble Vikings podcast.