Inside Our War Room: The Risks Continue

(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. For prior #MockFour posts, check out #MockFour Begins.)

Round 1
Trade – Vikings 1.03 for Rams 1.06, 2.07 and 4.01
1.06 – Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
Trade – Vikings
1.29 – Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford

Our first pick of the second round was incredibly difficult. Our war room was essentially tossing and turning between to particular prospects. While both would fill a position of need, they each had qualities that made them drastically different. Player one, while the much safer choice, would provide an immediate upgrade to arguably our weakest area. Player two is potentially a top-10 talent who has some major character concerns that caused his draft stock to drop significantly. I’ll cut straight to the point and tell you who we took then provide some more insight and reasoning. (You’re probably going to want it.)

With the 3rd pick in the 2nd round of the 2012 #MockFour draft…

the Minnesota Vikings select cornerback Janoris Jenkins, Alabama.

(Know who the other player was? Yep, you guessed it, safety Harrison Smith.)

Before you send death threats our way, hear me out. (I feel like I’m saying that a lot this particular mock draft!) Ultimately, we decided that, with the large amount of picks we amassed and our stellar first round, we could afford to take a chance on a potential risk. (Scratch that. Jenkins is not a potential risk, he is a bona fide wager.)

There is no doubt about it – Janoris Jenkins is first round talent. If you ask me, he is as good of a corner as Morris Claiborne, maybe even just slightly better. If it wasn’t for his character concerns Jenkins would be a top-10 pick. Take it to the bank. Jenkins is incredibly quick and is a great cover corner. He has good body control, is aggressive in going after the ball and hides his small stature well when playing in press coverage. Watch the above film of Jenkins as he, for the most part, completely shuts down star receivers A.J. Green and Julio Jones.

We are completely aware of the fact that the Vikings already have a player with character concerns in the secondary with Chris Cook. We understood that and chose to make the move anyway. Again, the fortunate situation we created for ourselves in round one allowed us to take such a high risk. In reality, I would be extremely unhappy if the Vikings took Jenkins with their first pick. I would be upset if the Vikings took Jenkins with their second pick. But the things we managed to do in round one through the trade with the Rams and the talent we obtained made us all feel comfortable with selecting Jenkins with our third pick.

Worst case scenario, Jenkins is a nightmare and does not turn out. The draft still wasn’t a loss. In the first round alone we managed to select two players in the top-10 on our board. Heck, we still have three picks to make in the top-100. The best case scenario, however, is incredibly exciting and was too difficult for us to pass on in this scenario.

Think about this too: The Vikings have taken chances on guys like Jenkins before who have turned into some of the best Vikings players of all-time. Do the names Moss, Carter or Harvin ring a bell? (I guess the verdict is still out on Harvin, though.)

If you tear us apart for this pick, we’ll understand. We know it was a very risky move. But you can’t say it’s not an interesting or intriguing one!

Before you rip us in the comments, make sure to read Adam’s notes below! Also, if you haven’t already, make sure to check out the #MockOne site and show those guys some love. Can’t wait to see what you guys think.

Adam’s Take: After moving all over the place during the first round, trade to gain and trading to lose second rounders, we actually ended up right back where we started in terms of second round position. We did field one offer for our pick, but the return wasn’t worth our attention and we quickly dismissed the idea after a counter offer was denied.

The discussion between the four of us started with a 3-1 vote in favor of drafting Notre Dame safety Harrison Smith. The one lone vote then went to work on the rest of us, and the vote quickly turned to 3-1 in favor of troubled North Alabama cornerback Janoris Jenkins.

This time, I was the one who was alone.

I had two reasons for not wanting Jenkins, the serious character issues being the first. The second issue I had was that I did not view cornerback as the biggest need in our secondary, let alone on our roster.

In the end, I think this was probably fairly representative of how things could play out in a real war room. I secretly wanted to take the risk on the incredible talent Jenkins possesses, but didn’t want to stake my reputation on it (if I had one, work with me, I’m still pretending this is real) and someone else was willing to.

So, with Jonathan Martin and Justin Blackmon in the bag, I reluctantly signed off on the move. I think we came out of the top 35 with three top-20 talents, even though Jenkins represents significant risk, so the #MockFour Vikings are well on their way to a successful rebuild.