Thursday, March 5, 2015
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justin blackmon

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(Note: This is a continuation of a series where we take you inside our War Room for the #MockOne draft series. This particular version is for #MockFour. If you are unfamiliar with what it is all about, you should probably start off by reading about what we did in the previous #MockThree.)

We are at it again. I had such a blast participating in #MockThree that I decided to just keep rolling right in to #MockFour. This time, though,  I’m the General Manager. Not only that, but everyone’s favorite Vikings writer, Adam,  is a member of the War Room. We’ve also added a new manager to the team: Ryan Broser, a great writer for Bruno Boys, Fantasy Victor and Bleacher Report Vikings. (Josh Deceuster, our GM for #MockThree has returned to provide his valued opinion in the War Room as well.) So, let’s cut to the chase, shall we?

The first two picks of this draft started off much like the previous drafts. Andrew Luck is selected by the Indianapolis Colts and Robert Griffin ends up with the Washington Redskins. Now on the clock at #3, we were prepared to select OT Matt Kalil, the sure thing that I so vehemently defended selecting in me and Adam’s recent debate. Ironically enough, we actually ended up not selecting Matt Kalil.

Owner and CEO of the Indianapolis Colts Jim Irsay is suddenly no stranger to the “Quarterback Carousel” game that haunts many NFL teams.

For the first time in a very long time, he has had to evaluate this Draft class’ top quarterback prospects after giving away the identity of his franchise, Peyton Manning.  While it is widely expected that Irsay and company will ultimately select Stanford star Andrew Luck with the first overall pick, he recently made comments about Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill that would suggest the Vikings will at least receive some inquiries about the availability of the third overall selection.

Irsay’s recent tweet said, “Tannehill is a hidden gem in this draft, a quiet secret who was always sneaking up to #3..you want him, you better talk to Zigi The Biggie!”

Former Colts G.M. Bill Polian also took to the airwaves to suggest that the path to Tannehill will run through the third overall selection.  He predicted that the Miami Dolphins would trade up to the third spot giving the Vikings their eighth overall selection, their second rounder, and their third rounder to secure Tannehill.

Since trade speculation is starting to pick , Brett and I, who have somewhat different opinions on the topic, decided to create a debate post to start the conversation. We hope it will continue into the comments section with opinions from you all.

According to this post-lockout chart, the Vikings third overall selection is worth 401.3 points of value.  The eighth overall pick (318 points), second round pick (159.1), and third rounder (119.4) total 596.5 as a package which suggests the Vikings would be getting the better end of the deal.

Okay, on to the debate!

It has been widely assumed that if the Vikings remained at the third spot in April’s Draft, they would select USC left tackle Matt Kalil.

Now, before I go any further, it would be a mistake for me not remind you that it is never too early to begin throwing smoke screens around, and the Vikings may be doing just that.

Still, it is worth noting that an unnamed Vikings official recently told The Sports Xchange that there is still heavy debate over which prospect would be the best available at the three spot.

The report singles out LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne as a player still in the mix to be selected third overall.

“But some people here love (Claiborne),” the official said. “I mean really love him.”

Obviously these two, and also Justin Blackmon, are prospects earning high praise and have the potential to help any team they are selected by.  Also, all three positions are major needs for this Vikings team that is, so far today, being very conservative in free agency.

If you haven’t noticed (you better have!) I am relying on Brett even more than I usually do to help me keep the site fresh with the latest news and rumors surrounding the Vikings.

It just so happens that this is one of those weeks when my real job has me tied up all hours of the day, and I am even more worthless than normal when I get home.

But don’t worry, I talked to Rick Spielman today and he said they would host a few more meetings with ownership and wait until Saturday to make any big roster decisions.  That will give me time recoup from the long work week and bring you the latest, greatest Vikings news as free agency approaches.

Spielman said that his free agency plans are finalized and that the team is simply waiting for March 13th to roll around.  In the meantime, he plans to attend as many pro days as possible, including Oklahoma State and USC, where he will get up-close looks at Matt Kalil and Justin Blackmon.

Oh, and if you are wondering what the heck I am babbling on about, click here to read all about Spielman’s recent statements regarding his plans for the week.

Day four is in the books with the Cleveland Browns selecting Oklahoma State wide receiver Justin Blackmon. It was close though with running back Trent Richardson being the runner-up.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, whose primary needs this offseason are cornerback, wide receiver and linebacker, are now on the clock. Use the poll below to make your selection and leave us a comment with some sort of explanation for your choice. We just might use yours as the “analysis” in our draft table.

Speaking of the “draft table”, don’t forget to check out the “Community Mock” page to see the prior picks in the draft!

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