Another EDGE Prospect Visits the Vikings

Sep 18, 2021; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Panthers running back Vincent Davis (22) recovers a fumble ahead of Western Michigan Broncos defensive lineman Marshawn Kneeland (94) during the second quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The 2024 NFL Draft will begin in just 12 days.

As a result, teams are in the process of concluding their draft evaluations on many prospects, and for the Minnesota Vikings, that has included a number of top 30 visits as well as private workouts for some of the QB prospects. Heading into the weekend, the Vikings have met with another EDGE prospect.

Another EDGE Prospect Visits the Vikings

Edge Prospect
Feb 3, 2024; Mobile, AL, USA; National edge Marshawn Kneeland of Western Michigan (99) and National linebacker Edefuan Ulofoshio of Washington (48) sack American quarterback Joe Milton III of Tennessee (5) during the first half of the 2024 Senior Bowl football game at Hancock Whitney Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Garafolo of NFL Network tweeted on Friday, “A lot of buzz lately for #WesternMichigan edge Marshawn Kneeland, who has one of the busiest pre-draft itineraries you’ll see. He visited the #Texans, #Vikings, #Buccaneers, #Panthers and #Colts this week, part of a 16-team visit schedule for the late first-/early second-rounder.”

Kneeland played four seasons for the Western Michigan Broncos after committing to the program in 2019 and redshirting his freshman season. At 6’3″ and 267 pounds, Kneeland doesn’t bring elite length to the edge rushing spot, but he is a powerful player who can win with an overwhelming bull rush.

During his four seasons of play at Western Michigan, Kneeland put together 149 tackles, 28 tackles for loss, 12.5 sacks, and three forced fumbles.

Feb 28, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Western Michigan defensive lineman Marshawn Kneeland (DL41) talks to the media at the 2024 NFL Combine at Indiana Convention Center. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

However, pass rushing isn’t the only thing that Kneeland can bring to a defensive front. He is an excellent run defender as well, and his PFF grade of 83.4 in that department tied for 10th among all FBS edge rushers with at least 100 snaps in run defense this past season.

Many have projected Kneeland as a Day 2 pick, but Dane Brugler of The Athletic had this to say of the Wester Michigan product: “Marshawn Kneeland is my pick for the player who could surprise and be a 1st round pick. Every team is looking for more pass rush help and MK has burst and heavy hands. Finished as the No. 32 overall player on my board.”

The Vikings currently do not have a pick during the second day of the draft, but with Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s propensity for swinging trades throughout the draft weekend, that could very well change by the time Friday, April 26th arrives.

Feb 3, 2024; Mobile, AL, USA; American offensive lineman Javon Foster of Missouri (75) battle National edge Marshawn Kneeland of Western Michigan (99) during the second half of the 2024 Senior Bowl football game at Hancock Whitney Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports

Of course, the Vikings filled the majority of their edge rushing needs through free agency this offseason. Both Jonathan Greenard and Andrew Van Ginkel are very suitable starters to replace Danielle Hunter and D.J. Wonnum this season.

Even still, Kneeland’s versatility and potential at the position certainly is worth Minnesota’s interest if they are able to snatch another pick.

Kneeland will turn 23 years old in July.

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

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of 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.