NFL Draft 2015

MOCK UPDATE: Reunited and It Feels So Good

Free agency is winding down, and the Minnesota Vikings have enjoyed a quiet, if intriguing week of trades and transactions.

Things truly kicked off on Friday, when the Vikings acquired the deep threat they’ve been lacking by trading for Miami’s Mike Wallace. Shortly after making the move, Rick Spielman released veteran wide receiver Greg Jennings, freeing up more than $5 million in cap space. The flurry of roster changes seemingly solidified Minnesota’s wide receiver corps, but I’m hard-pressed to believe the front office is finished tinkering.

Austin’s Mock Draft 2.0 

Right now, it appears Jarius Wright will fill Jennings’s role with the team, working from the slot in the intermediate passing game. Wallace will split outside and give the Vikings some speed down the field. He’s a burner, and Norv Turner will likely find ways to utilize that explosiveness opposite the emerging Charles Johnson.

Even with Cordarrelle Patterson on the roster, the Vikings lack a big bodied receiver who can win jump balls and secure targets in the short passing game — routes like slants and posts. Charles Johnson emerged from the shadows in 2014, but he’s yet to prove he can make those plays. Adam Thielen, for all of his fanfare and love in Minnesota, won’t be at the top of the depth chart any time soon.

Luckily for Rick Spielman, this year’s draft class is loaded with talent at wide receiver, including one player I believe the Vikings will pick 11th-overall:

DeVante Parker, WR- Louisville

As many of you know, Teddy Bridgewater and DeVante Parker played together at Louisville from 2011 to 2013, where the two combined for 1,920 yards and 28 touchdowns.

In his Vikings Territory scouting report of Parker, Luke Inman called the 6’3″, 209-pound receiver a “Randy Moss Lite” because of his deep speed, incredible catch radius, and mastery of the jump ball. Unlike Amari Cooper and Kevin White, Parker complements Norv Turner’s “Air Coryell” offense incredibly well, stretching defenses to open up the underneath routes.

Yes, the receiver position is crowded in Minnesota, but the Vikings picked up Wallace at a relatively cheap price (a 5th-round draft pick in 2015). He’s not the red zone threat the team needs, and may be more well-suited to a role as the Vikings’ number 2 receiver. Am I crazy for saying the Vikings will select Parker? Possibly, but I also know much Bridgewater enjoyed playing with Parker:

Reunited, and oh, does it feel good.

Be sure to check out my entire mock draft for full analysis of all 32 teams!

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Austin Belisle

Austin Belisle is the West Coast's biggest Vikings fan, a football diehard cheering on the purple and yellow from sunny California. After graduating from San Jose State University in 2014, he began working full-time in corporate marketing and blogging on various sports websites. Austin's passion for the Vikings led him to Vikings Territory, where he hopes to share his lifelong enthusiasm for the team with readers on a daily basis. You can follow him on Twitter @austincbelisle

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  1. I am not so sure the acquisition of Mike Wallace is such a good thing. This boy has an attitude problem and may have forced the releasing of Greg Jennings. We should have cut Cordarelle Patterson and either Chad Greenway or Brian Robinson to free up cap space. Then we could have recruited Greg Bolling or Michael Johnson. This years draft class of wide recievers is so deep we could have waited till third round and still ended up with a credible receiving core.

  2. I can’t see us taking a WR with the 11th.
    Has to be Brandon Scherff, if he’s there or LB or DB.
    We can have Randy Moss, Calvin Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald all lined up, but if Teddy doesn’t get the time to throw to them, what’s the point? The O-line has to be our top priority.

    1. I’d agree with you, but I have Scherff off the board at 9 to the Giants, and I can’t see the Vikings taking a linebacker this high in the draft. If anything, Spielman may trade back or pull the trigger on a corner like Trae Waynes or Marcus Peters…

      1. I’d be tickled with Waynes at 11. I also wouldn’t mind seeing us trade back a bit and pick up a LB. Just don’t want a WR at 11.
        Austin, why is the New Orlean Saints and Green Bay Packer logos ‘Fuzzy’ on your draft board?
        Is it because you hate them with all your heart and wished nothing but 2-14 seasons upon them for eternity? Or some other reason?

        1. I’ll be interested to see what happens. I can’t fight the feeling that Parker makes too much sense to pass up. Even with Johnson and Wallace on the team, the offense is still lacking an “it” player.

          We’ll see at training camp what happens at guard. Berger has been re-signed, and Yankey could very well be the answer.

          Oh, that’s a site wide change to the logos 😉 I think Vikings fans know why they’re blurred out.

  3. Wow! Fran put down the bottle long enough to make a decent comment! In all seriousness, you are correct Sir! Besides, if Parker is a ‘deep burner’ we just aquired that presumably. If they take a WR at 11 it’ll be guy they believe is at polished route runner and elite at the entire position. We Asiata for the redzone!!

  4. I would like Beasley or Waynes at no.11 otherwise trade back(cinncy?) and take Gordon ,Mckinney or Shaq Thompson.I agree with William Paz,we can get a good”maybe great ” WR in Dorsett or Devin Smith in rd. 2.

  5. I’m torn over the thought of both Amari Cooper and DeVante Parker being there at 11. Hoping for either of those guys and rounding out the draft with:

    Rd 1. Amari Cooper WR
    Rd 2. Kevin Johnson CB
    Rd 3. Paul Dawson LB
    Rd 4. Cedric Ogbeuchi OT/G
    Rd 4. David Cobb RB

    1. This would probably be the best case scenario for the Vikings – bar none. That said, I have a hard time thinking Paul Dawson is there in the 3rd. That said, we get that additional 2nd rounder via Arizona and we’re in business.

  6. Sorry Austin but I think you have to take talent over fit. Great wideouts fit in every team and Cooper looks to be a great wideout.

  7. Austin, after the trade I don’t see any chance of the Vikes taking a WR high in the draft. We need MLB, CB, Safety, DE, LG help (in no particular order) & all those positions would immediately help the overall team. Every one of those positions should be higher need than WR. Time will settle all bets, but I’ll put my money on 0% chance WR goes in Rounds 1, 2, & 3. Late round flier on a guy they like, maybe. I think a trade back is very possible but if they draft at #11, Trae Waynes makes sense, as it’s a tough position to fill in Free Agency & extremely expensive. MLB would be my 2nd guess, as there is several good to great players in this year’s draft.

  8. I’d be happy with Cooper or Waynes at this point. Wouldn’t argue with a blue chip OL.