It seems like the NFL Draft should be just a week or two away. At the very most a month… But May 8th? The agony! It feels like it’s a lifetime away. So, to pass the time, we speculate. We try and predict the decisions of32 NFL franchises when they are on the clock. Of course, we’re always far, far off from what actually transpires. In fact, I went back and looked at my mock from last year… Want to know how many selections I got correct?

Not a single one.

That’s okay, though. I was in good company… Well known draft expert Mel Kiper didn’t have one correct pick in the first round either. (Technically, Kiper did mock Patterson to the Vikings, just at the wrong spot. He also mocked Eddie Lacy to the Packers but, again, at the wrong spot.)

Mike Mayock? We all know Mayock is one of the best in the biz. How many picks did he get right? Well, he hit on like five or six. But, I mean… This is what this guy dedicates his entire year to.

Truth is, there are just far too many variables to consider, things that change, trades, smoke screens, etc. to get anywhere near accurate with these kind of draft predictions. Nevertheless, they are incredibly entertaining because they simulate the possibilities of what could be come May 8th. The young stars who could potentially take your favorite team to the next level.

I have the honor of getting things started this offseason here at VT with my first mock of the year. While it was fun, I’m sure there will be a bunch of changes in the following months. As you’ll see, I have the Houston Texans selecting quarterback Blake Bortles with the first overall pick. This may come as a disappointment to some as it seems Bortles has become a favorite amongst Vikings fans at the eighth overall pick. Bortles to the Texans just seems like a good possibility, though. Although raw, I think Bortles athleticism, size and raw talent is probably intriguing to Texans Head Coach Bill O’Brien. O’Brien also got to see what Bortles is capable of first hand when Penn State was beat at home by the Bortles-lead UCF Knights 34-31. Bortles has the potential to be the prototypical quarterback quite a few franchises will be looking for. Franchises that are drafting ahead of the Minnesota Vikings.

Continue on for the rest of the picks in the draft along with some analysis of how and why selections were made. Of course, would love to hear your thoughts on the Vikings selection and your own predictions on how everything will transpire. Enjoy!

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  1. KM is great, but I disagree with your explanation / assessment of overloading the offense with superstars. Watkins would be a bad choice because not only are we for all intents and purposes STACKED in the WR department, but a bad arm CAN tank a great receiving corps. Look at Ponder with Percy. Percy was a legitimate choice for MVP until he got hurt–but even with Percy and AP and Kyle Rudolph, we were not heavily favored to win a lot of games.
    Depth is great, but without breadth, the Vikings could find themselves in a $#!% hurricane. I would like to see KM on the team, but I really hope we don’t reach for Watkins–I’d much rather we trade down to DET or some other team that wants a high caliber WR.

    • Watkins would not be a reach at pick 8. He would most likely represent the best player available if he were to fall to the Vikings.

      I think the Rams will select Watkins at #2 and they will think about trading up from 13 to 8 with the Vikings to get Greg Robinson or Jake Mathews.

      Regardless of who the Rams pick at #2, I see them as a possible trade partner for Spielman.

      I think The Vikings will select Derek Carr with the 13th pick after trading back with the Rams.

      • Carl, I wanted to give you a like and a dislike. Won’t let me do it so, I gave you a thumbs up for dropping back and drafting Carr.
        Watkins would not be a reach at 8 though I would rather fall back for more picks and grab Carr, Mosley, Dennard, Gilbert, Nix or anyone else that can help.

    • Sammy Watkins could go as high as 2, so I dont think that it would be a reach for him to be drafted at 8 at all. He could be the best player on the board at that point, regardless of holes in other areas he will improve the team. Last thing I want to see is Detroit lineup with Calvin Johnson and Sammy Watkins on the opposite side. Could easily be the best wide reviever core in the league. I do agree that regardless of the amount of talent you have on an offense a bad quarterback is not going to get the most out of the unit.

    • Another WR? Why not? Watkins at 8 or trade back a few and grab Evans? Jennings is getting up there in age. Can this be another great WR combo a la Carter, Moss and Reed or White and Rashad? Can these guys be that good? Maybe. Only one way to find out.
      Can’t wait. Hopefully we won’t be disappointed (Williamson).

  2. I really think Houston takes Clowney. And Johnny football drops to some where in the 20’s in the first round.

      • I really doubt the Vikings will draft Johnny football. He doesn’t fit Turners system. And I don’t the Zimmer would want to deal with his antics. Plus one hit in the knees and he is done.

        • Turner does a good job of working with the players he has, so I do think he could work with Manziel, but I’m not sold on him to the Vikings. I don’t think people realize how elite a prospect Watkins is. He is the best receiver to come out since the Green/Jones draft. If he slipped to 8 it would be hard not to take him, but I’m guessing there would be some decent trade offers to take advantage of if that ends up being the case. Good first mock, the biggest omission in my eyes is Aaron Donald. I think that guy is going to be the best interior pass rusher in the league in a very short amount of time. I almost wish the Vikings hadn’t drafted Floyd last year so we could take him…I see a lot of John Randle in that guy.

          • I agree with a lot of your post Dan. If by some chance Watkins does slide to 8, I think the phone will be ringing off the hook in the Vikes war room. Spielman knows how to leverage teams (see the Browns trade of 2012) Vikes could get a boat load of picks.

        • Yeah Johnny Manziel doesn’t have an attitude problem. So he partied a lot when he was 19, who didn’t. He matured very quickly when needed I think that shows a lot more than a kid who liked to drink.

          • From Barry Switzer……………..I’m gonna tell you. I said Johnny Manziel is … I don’t like his antics. I think he’s an arrogant little prick,” Switzer said. “I’ve said that and I’ll say it again. He’s a privileged kid, he’s embarrassed himself, he’s embarrassed his teammates, his program. He’s embarrassed his coach. And they’ll all have to defend him because they have to coach. I know that. I spent 40 years in the damn game so I know how it works.”

            And yes I read the whole article.

        • Not a huge JF fan but he could fit a version of Norvelle’s offense. Rivers sits in the gun like JF surveys and throws a ton. Playaction requires some footwork training (footwork is easily learned) but the reads are easy. Look deep 1st if room throw – If not the space created between LBers filling for run fake and the deep 1st look creates huge windows for slot rec and TEs in the intermediate areas. Makes QB play easier especially for young QBs.

  3. Hey Brett, We should have a mock draft contest at VT. Everyone could submit their mocks and they could all be posted somewhere on the site.The person who is gets the picks most correct gets 10 empty Colt 45 beer cans and bragging rights.

  4. My thoughts about what the Vikes should do are as follows:

    1. If Mack is available at 8, then the Vikes better sprint to the podium.

    2. If Mack is gone and the QB’s are also gone (top3), I would get Justin Gilbert.

    3. If some how Watkins falls to them, trade down to the highest bidder. Should get a lot of picks for
    that trade.

      • I was tempted to draft a punter there Johnny but that is a deep position is this years draft also. My above (opinion) did not reflect trades. I figure we can trade back into the 1st round using our 2nd and 3rd round picks to get one. I thought that was obvious. :0

    • Norseman66 – Sounds like a plan.

      I would go as far as to say if Bortles is not there, trade back and grab as many picks as you can. I would not drop back past 18-20. There are a lot of really good football players that will be available. They fit the Vikings needs too. That is kind of a bad thing because there are a lot of holes to fill. Hopefully a few get plugged via free agency.

      They did a nice job of trading back and the up again last year. Hopefully the brain trust can do this again. I always wondered why more teams did not do this.
      Mack would be great and so would Gilbert.

      I personally like Mosley because of his play and leadership. I hear Zimm likes smart players. I think Mosely may be the pick. According to mock drafts, Mosely may be available a few slots down form 8. He will be our best LB since Scott Studwell.

      Trade back a few and grab the best guy sounds like a plan.

  5. Love Mack at 8. Calvin Pryor in the second round, That would be great for our defense. Maybe get Baptiste in the fourth. That would be great for our secondary. Could McCarron be available with one of our third round picks?

    • McCarron will likely go somewhere in the second/third round. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him available when the Vikings select in the third.

      • I think Pryor may be gone by the 2nd round (40th pick). Either McCarron, Mettenberger or Garoppolo should be available with our 2nd 3rd (96) rounder and maybe our 4th (104).


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