Sunday, December 11, 2016

andrew luck

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For the next 32 days (give or take) I want to take Vikings Territory on a journey through the first round of the upcoming NFL Draft by allowing you to vote on each pick on a day-by-day basis.  The picks will be decided by who gets the majority of the votes and the results will be posted here, updated daily.

In the “analysis” section of the grid I will pick a comment that I feel best describes the rationale behind the choice, so be sure to leave a comment stating your reasoning.

Today, we will start you off with an easy one, as the Colts are on the clock with the first overall pick.

It seems to be all but a done deal that the two Draft selections in front of the Vikings will be used on quarterbacks Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III, in that order.  That essentially leaves the Vikings with the options of selecting left tackle Matt Kalil, selecting cornerback Morris Claiborne, selecting wide receiver Justin Blackmon, or trading down for a healthy ransom.

Rumors are flying around right now that the Rams could trade that number two pick well before April’s Draft, however, which could put the Vikings next in line to entertain substantial offers for the third overall selection.

And those rumors of an early trade might just have some weight behind them.

Think about it.  The value of the number two overall selection, which gives a team the right to presumably draft Griffin, may never be higher than it is right now and the Rams reportedly have a large number of suitors.

If they wait, however, then some of those suitors will likely drop out of the running as they fill their quarterback needs elsewhere.  Fewer suitors means a smaller audience for the auction, which could mean a lesser deal.

Let’s say, for example, that Miami signs Peyton Manning.  They are now out of the auction.  What if the Browns or Redskins sign Matt Flynn?  The Niners could re-commit to Alex Smith.  What if the Seahawks decided they wanted to roll with Jason Campbell?  What if one or more of those teams decide they like Ryan Tannehill and choose to wait it out for Draft Day and see how things unfold?

The Rams may never again have as many bidders as they do right now, following an amusement park ride of hype at the NFL Combine, and they may opt to strike a deal while the iron is hot. 

I would… if I were them.

If, and it is admittedly a big if, things unfold early with the Rams trade options, it could put the Vikings in the driver’s seat for the remainder of the Draft.  In fact, they may be able to hold an auction of their own for Tannehill if enough teams feel like he can be a franchise quarterback (we’ve seen lesser quarterbacks rise faster than that).

Or it could simply be a matter of testing the waters and seeing what price team’s might be willing to pay for a chance to snag Kalil, Blackmon, or Claiborne.

Being in the driver’s seat is exactly where the Vikings would ideally be sitting, so pay close attention to the drama surrounding the number two pick, as it might just define this Vikings Draft.

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Just a quick note to draw attention to the fact that I updated my mock draft today.

I don’t want to shock you, but I have yet to change my mind on who the Vikings should select, although there are some pretty significant changes elsewhere in the mock.

I’m hoping to have version 2.1 coming out soon in which I address the second round.

Check it out by clicking here.

One month ago today, I discussed the impact that decisions from junior quarterbacks could have on the Vikings 2012 Draft, even though they are unlikely to be seeking one of them for themselves.

Yesterday, Landry Jones announced he will remain at Oklahoma for his senior season, which could impact the trade value the Vikings have at the #3 spot.

The first round quarterback prospects are expected to consist of Andrew Luck of Stanford and Robert Griffen III of Baylor, with a bit of a drop off to Texas A&M’s Ryan Tannehill who is currently projected as a late first round pick by most draftniks.

Assuming Andrew Luck is drafted first overall as widely anticipated, this could leave all other quarterback needy teams in a position in which they scramble to trade up with either the Rams or the Vikings to select the highly touted Griffen. 

If a team doesn’t trade upwards, they will risk coming away from the first round empty handed at their most important position.

Of course, the Rams themselves could be interested in selecting Griffen since they have a new regime coming in and Sam Bradford’s ridiculous rookie contract is now a thing of the past.

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