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Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Mocking the Mock: On Offense… Who Do You Pick?

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    It’s draft season! That means that there’s a mock for every second of every day. As this is really our first organized draft as a website (The site was founded in May of 2015, and really was just a blog of sorts in 2016) it would only make sense that we ran a mock, or six. However, being that I’ve admitted that I am not very well versed when it comes to NCAA Football (Can you blame me? The Gophers are the NCAA’s San Francisco 49ers) I can’t really keep a straight face while pretending to be some sort of draft guru all of a sudden.

    So, instead of attempting to pass a computer generated mock off as my own thoughts/desires/work, I thought I’d run a mock on FanSpeak.com and then present the options that are still available when the Vikings pick at 48th. Surprisingly, both of my favorite players were available, still, at 48 in Joe Mixon of Oklahoma and Curtis Samuel of THE Ohio State University. So, being that I’m terrible at making decisions like that I’ll default to you guys on which would be the better pick (If either would). Essentially, my main goal is to provide a realistic mock draft that should give you guys a general idea of what to expect both next Thursday, but Friday as well… Let us know your thoughts on that either on Facebook, Twitter, Below or on our Message Board!

    Here’s Round One:

    A couple things I wanted to point out. First, the idea of Leonard Fournette joining the Carolina Panthers terrifies me. I’ve often talked about the fact that the NFC, as it was in 2016, was relatively weak (Historically speaking) and that if the Vikings were to make a run, this would be the best time to do it. The Panthers personified what can happen to a teams self esteem after losing the Super Bowl as they went from being a nearly unstoppable 15-1 team to being 7-8-1 in one year. The addition of Fournette would take a lot of the pressure off of Cam Newton and would also diversify their offense, so… Look out.

    The Eagles are picking 14th thanks to the trade the Vikings made to acquire Sam Bradford. While I’ve been a huge backer of that move (and a large supporter of Bradford), it could end up being really painful if the Eagles do select Christian McCaffrey and he ends up being a stud. Although, I can’t help but compare McCaffrey to Toby Gerhart who was mostly worthless as a back-up to Adrian Peterson. I also find it interesting that in a draft that is supposedly this deep at offensive guard and on the other hand super thin at offensive tackle, that only two offensive lineman are taken in the first round of this particular mock. Neither of which are Forrest Lamp, the guard that everyone and their mother would love to fall to 48th (He’d be a no-brainer if that were to happen… Stay tuned).

    Let’s take a look at the second round, leading up to the 48th pick, anyway…

    Now, I’d be remiss if I didn’t talk about the amazing names that popped up in the second round here. Juju? Zay? Obi? Forrest? Ryan? Or my personal favorite… Raekwon… Someone is a ‘Only Built 4 Cuban Linx’ fan! Also, someone in the first round was named Taco… Talk about a perfect sponsorship opportunity for Taco Bell!

    This round compensated for the lack of offensive lineman picked in the first round. The aforementioned Forrest Lamp, Taylor Moton and Ryan Ramcyzk all came off of the board one after the other, essentially eliminating that position from the Vikings radar (At least in the second round). The good news is that the offensive guard position is incredibly deep and at this point in the draft, barely touched. So, that’s a big option for the Vikings now that it’s their pick. So, essentially, think of this as us being on the clock, right now, as you read this. I’m genuinely interested in YOUR thoughts on what the Vikes should do with the available players shown below.

    Let’s look at their options. First, let’s check out the offensive guard spot, since we touched on that…
    As you can see (Kinda), Dan Feeney of Indiana is still available and he’s been one of the guards that has been most linked to the Vikings at 48. The idea of bringing him in intrigues me, however it also puts me in a weird position that I’m not accustomed to. Essentially, if you’ve read my stuff consistently you’ll know that I have two major biases when it comes to the draft. One is my strong belief that Big Ten players are superior to players from other conferences, for many reasons. However, I also have a strong, Matt Millen-esque desire for the team to add as many skill players as possible. While I understand that sometimes that’s not the best move to make, I do believe that this year, the Vikings need to look at bringing in a skill player with their first overall pick as this Vikings offense lacks an identity. As purplePTSD.com Senior Writer Luke Braun has said, a player like Curtis Samuel from Ohio State can provide that identity. Essentially, we need a player maker and Curtis Samuel is that play-maker. So, let’s look at whose available from a skill player perspective, meaning the wide receiver and running back positions to better flesh out the opportunities the Vikings have at those positions.

    I know that it’s kinda hard to see the results here, but this isn’t ESPN so get off my back! Really though, what’s exciting here is the fact that Joe Mixon is still on the board, and he’s actually ranked as the 124th prospect. That makes sense as both the Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots have removed Mixon from their boards completely, based on the misdemeanor assault charge he got back in 2014 after punching a woman in the face at a restaurant.

    Now, his case is a tricky one and I’ve written about this in depth before. So I won’t delve into that here, but should this scenario be the case it looks like the Vikings will end up having to decide between Mixon, who is arguably the best all-around back in the draft, and Curtis Samuel, a wide receiver/running back hybrid who dominated the Ohio State offense while also showing that he can return kicks as a freshman and sophomore. He’d essentially plug-into three different positions of need for the Vikings and because of that I think it’d be hard for Vikings general manager Rick Spielman to pass him up. Here is the list of available wide receivers, per this mock.

    Now, I understand that the Vikings have needs on defense, as well, but that’s a topic for another day/piece (Check back tomorrow). I more wanted to focus on the conundrum that I could see happening, in the fact that both Mixon and Samuel could be available, while head coach Mike Zimmer could be talking Spielman’s ear off about drafting another corner.

    So, I guess I leave it up to you! What do you think the Vikings should do? You can comment on our Facebook page, on our Twitter account, through Facebook below, through WordPress Below or via our Message Board!

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