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January 20-25 - Senior Bowl
January 26 - Pro Bowl
February 17 - First day of franchise / transition player designation
February 19-25 - Scouting Combine
March 11 - Free Agency begins
March 23 - Owner's Meeting
April 7 - Off-season workouts begin for teams with new HC
April 17 - 2014 Schedule Released
April 21 - Off-season workouts begin for teams with returning HC
May 2 - Deadline for RFAs to sign offers
May 8-10 - NFL Draft
As many of you know, we have developed a unique “Big Board” with over 200 players ranked, and we’ll be updating it live as the weekend progresses.
You can access it here or at any time by using the menu at the top of the screen.
The Big Board was developed by taking our own unique rankings and averaging them against numerous other big boards from some of our favorite draft gurus. We’ll be crossing names off the list right away, starting in about an hour, so make sure to keep it open in a seperate tab for quick referencing.
We are doing things a little different this year, trying an alternative from our normal live chat format, and have installed a chat room for readers to gravitate towards as the evening wears on.
The link to the chat is on the menu at the top of the screen or you can access it by clicking right here.
What hasn’t changed is our request that users keep the discussion at PG-13 rating (at the worst) for the sake of our younger fanbase.
What has changed:
I would just like to say “Thank You” to our super awesome MVP-reader “Harvest” for setting this up for us all even though he won’t even be able to participate tonight. He volunteered a lot of time to make sure you all enjoy yourselves this weekend and I would appreciate you all giving him a big “thanks” in the comments sections, as well.
If Michael David Smith of PFT gets this wrong then he will never, ever, ever be able to live it down.
According to Smith, the Chiefs have already decided their first selection (and our VT mock drafts) will be Central Michigan tackle Eric Fisher. The Chiefs inability to trade left tackle Branden Albert makes Fisher a candidate to start at the right tackle spot which normally wouldn’t be considered with the top overall pick, so this really is a surprising rise to the top of the Draft class for Fisher.
Of course, the Chiefs could still trade Albert and move Fisher to the left side, or simply put Albert on the left side, but this is obviously a significant development in what was already a very unpredictable Draft.
The Vikings would prefer to see offensive tackles go like hot cakes at the top of this Draft, because that would allow more value at positions of need to fall to them at their respective spots later on in the round.
If the Vikings draft Manti Te’o tonight it might not be the only Draft-related move that we’ve been calling for months now.
When profiling punter Ryan Allen, and then later Brad Wing, I outlined all of the various reasons the Vikings might send special teams coordinator Mike Priefer on the road to find a new punter this offseason. Kluwe’s $1.4 million salary chews up significant space (for a punter) in the last year of his current deal. He’s getting older and seems to be, at least slightly, regressing. There is some incredible talent and depth at the punter position available this year. Priefer also expressed last season that Kluwe’s off-field endeavours have been exhausting.
With the success Priefer had last year in sneaking in some visits with kicker Blair Walsh, who they then selected to replace Ryan Longwell, I felt that the timing made sense to attempt the same type of transition at punter.
And the signs are pointing to that being a very real possibility.
1500 ESPN reports that Priefer conducted at least three private visits with prospective punters prior to tonight. LSU’s Brad Wing, Arizona State’s Josh Hubner and UCLA’s Jeff Locke have all been worked out privately by Priefer, according to the report. These visits are unlikely to be a result of anything less than strong interest, because the Vikings already have a “camp leg” in the form of T.J. Conley on the roster.
Kluwe’s job is safe for one more day, but it appears he could be looking for work as soon as Sunday.
I’m going to be honest with you, I’ve just about thrown in the towel on the whole mock draft thing this year.
It isn’t for a lack of preparation. It isn’t a lack of confidence in my evaluations. It isn’t for a lack of reading “this will 100% happen” or “there is no way that happens” from various media outlets or from fans. It certainly isn’t for a lack of caring.
I just find this draft class to be so incredibly unpredictable. The lack of quarterback talent will test teams with the need for a new one. The incredible depth at the defensive line and secondary positions makes it very hard to stack the talent with any conviction. With the Vikings now having two first round picks to work with, and a roster with plenty of needs, their draft possibilities seem even more endless than usual.
Setting all that aside, however, I now present you with my final 2013 NFL Mock Draft with just hours to go until the real thing goes down tonight.
I have decided to give the Vikings a well-known linebacker and an often-mocked defensive tackle, and the results in full can be seen right here.
Get ready for a wild evening, Vikes fans! We’ll be here all night to give insight and opinions as the action unfolds.
Don’t touch that channel!