NFL Draft 2016

MOCK DRAFT: Belisle Version 2.0

See my entire second 2016 NFL Mock Draft by CLICKING HERE.

Wow, was my first attempt at a mock draft wrong, or what? I speculated that the Minnesota Vikings would select Notre Dame linebacker Jaylon Smith with the 23rd-overall pick. And just a few days later, reports surfaced that the prospect’s surgically repaired knee wasn’t as healthy as originally thought. While the pick wasn’t a “reach” at the time, it quickly became an impossible scenario, and one I hope to avoid this time around.

That’s why I’m going with the obvious, if safe choice in the second version of my mock draft; a wide receiver. The Vikings made multiple moves in free agency that would allow them to target such a player in the first round. With holes filled along the offensive line — and one created by releasing Mike Wallace — Rick Spielman can now focus his efforts on adding the best receiver in the class:

Josh Doctson, WR – TCU

If Doctson is available when the Vikings select, and Spielman doesn’t pull the trigger, he’d be doing a disservice to third-year quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. While the signings of Alex Boone, Phil Loadholt, and Mike Harris almost guarantee the offensive line is improved in 2016, questions remain around the wide receiver corps.

Stefon Diggs and Jarius Wright are “sure things” at the position, but outside of those two, the Vikings are missing a playmaker on the outside. Doctson has the potential to not only fill that void, but become one of the game’s next great wide receivers. After the combine, Doctson reportedly received a high grade from the Vikings, and he’s currently Mike Mayock‘s third-ranked wide receiver prospect.

Adding Doctson would give Bridgewater an excellent route runner with the speed to get downfield quickly, the jumping ability and body control to dominate at the catch point, and the hands to haul in almost any pass. He has the size and ball skills to thrive in the NFL, and he’d be the perfect complement on the outside alongside the emerging Diggs.

CLICK HERE TO SEE MY ENTIRE 2016 MOCK DRAFT VERSION 2.0

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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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33 Comments

  1. I’m sorry but that would be a mistake for the Vikings. None of the WRs in this years draft would have gone in the first round in either of the last two years drafts….If the Vikings truly want one of them, they should trade down to take them. Also, as a rule, first round picks should(with the exception of QB) not go to skill positions.

    1. Not sold on Doctson at 23. Still not understand why people aren’t concerned about his ability to create separation, or his lack of speed. Also scouting report is mixed at best with respect to his route running. TCU stats with a grain of salt.

      1. I share your concerns about Doctson. A 24 yr old receiver who does one thing well that we know of–run vertical routes. The exact thing that our franchise qb struggles with. So maybe we should build a user friendly offense for Teddy that features his strengths instead of continuing to force him into Turner’s Air Coryell model?

        Give me Treadwell in the first or Tyler Boyd/Sterling Shepard in the 2nd or 3rd over this guy.

        1. Agree with you on Boyd in the 2nd. I also like the Ohio State receivers in the second. Miller and Thomas.

          That leaves the 1st round open for the likes of an OT (Taylor Decker, Jack Conklin), OLB (Darron Lee, Lenard Floyd) or what would really make my draft day is for RB E. Elliot to be available.

          What say you Mr. Magnum?

          1. From everything I’ve read it sounds like Conklin is the better prospect than Decker. With the tackle situation being what it is (Loadholt is a long shot to ever return to form, Kalil….don’t get me started on that guy, that’s a small novel on the why and how that guy is a turd as a football player, Clemmings is an extremely raw prospect) there’s an excellent chance we go into next offseason complaining about how the o-line did us in and how we have ZERO tackles that could reasonably be expected to start and not get Teddy killed.

            So I like Conklin.

            Darron Lee sure looks like a stud on tape. My only concern with him is how often do the Vikings use 3 Linebackers? From a schematic point of view I’m not sure that pick gives us the highest ROI. Had the Vikings taken a more aggressive approach at fixing the o-line and signed Reggie Nelson in FA then they would be in an excellent position to take a BPA approach in round 1. Which might look like Darron Lee, Andrew Billings, or even Ezekiel Elliot.

            1st round running backs make me a little nervous, but if you were to tell me we had a good o-line and we shipped out Adrian Peterson and his 11 million dollar salary and replaced him with a more versatile back like Elliot I’d be pretty happy about that. Elliot appears to be a much better fit for a Teddy-centric offense.

            1. Rift,

              Thank you for your thoughtful response. Being a Viking fan in NJ isn’t easy. There are only a couple of acquaintances that I know who like the Vikings.

              Vikings Territory is by far my favorite web site for Viking information. The articles and fan responses are great. It make this time of year more interesting as I’m addicted to free agent and draft rumors and predictions.

              As for RB Elliot, I’d like that pick even if the keep Peterson. You can’t ask for a better guy to learn from on your rookie season. 2017 would be Elliot who may be a 3 down NFL back spelled by McKinnon. Not bad.

              Another RB I think would be a good fit is Paul Perkins out of UCLA. He’s listed as a good pass blocker and excellent out of the backfield. Sounds like traits that would benefit Bridgewater. Current projections have him going in the 3rd or 4th round.

              Yes, OL has me concerned as well. Conklin would be a nice pick up. Not very exciting but would fit a need.

              Either way, I really like the BPA approach. The additaions of Barr and Hendricks has helped out on Def. That’s kind off why I’m high on another LB. Your point on how often they will be on the field is valid and I did not think of that.

              Here’s an all offense 4 round mock draft

              1- OT Jack Conklin
              2- WR Tylor Boyd
              3- RB Paul Perkins
              4- G Denver Kirkland

              We know how Rick Spielman has drafted guys from the same school. With Ohio State having so many players projected in the 1st two rounds:

              1- LB Darron Lee
              2- SS Von Bell

              1- RB E. Elliot
              2- WR Braxton Miller

              1- OT Tylor Decker
              2- WR Michael Thomas

              1- OT Tylor Decker
              2 – LB Joshua Perry

              Regards,

              Joe

              1. One guy your forgetting from OSU 3/4 round a project but possible future super star Cordaral Jones
                Competition is good and he could be another Cam Newton in 4-5 years with the right coaching

                1. Keep in mind that Zimmer and Co. seem committed to Kendricks as a middle linebacker, as opposed to moving him outside.

                  I will say that IF left tackle and wide receiver were not such glaring needs, I’d be pretty ecstatic if we traded up to get Myles Jack and reunited him with his former UCLA running mates. A true weakside LB with the coverage skills of a strong safety would be a pretty sweet toy for Zimmer and Edwards to play with. Ah well, it’s nice to dream.

                  1. Yes, those needs. Ugh. I still think they draft an impact player in the first round regardless of needs.

                    Josh Perry and Su’a Cravens (had to look up how to spell his name) may be available in round 2. Cravens is a SS converted to a LB. I’m sure Zimmer could use a guy like that too.

                    Is there some kind of basketball game going on? Just wondering. Lol

        2. Teddy would be All-Pro if Doctson would become a starter … through it high, he’ll bring it down.

      2. Take a look at how good Boykin is … when the ball is in the general area, its going to be Doctson’s ball, period.

  2. Austin, you are saying Doctson had the ability to get down field quickly. I don’t think this is true in that almost universally every single scouting report says he has trouble getting off the line when pressed, and that his speed is average. I guess I feel like your assessment of Doctson is misguided, and kind of demonstrates my point in that people who want Doctson at 23 seem to be all together ignoring any of concerns associated with him.

    1. While I agree he’s not a surefire prospect like Odell Beckham Jr., I think he’s one of the best in the class and a solid pick with the 23rd slot. I think we can all agree that WR is a real need, and I’m only going off what I’ve read, seen, and heard about Doctson.

      Here’s my other point — Matt Miller reported that the Vikings were high on Waynes after the Combine last year, and he’s reporting the same thing this year. It would lead me to believe that he’s high on their board and a real possibility to fall to the Vikings when they select in the third round.

      Yes, he’s not the separator like some, but his ball skills are exceptional and he’s one of the best at high-pointing the football. Everything I’ve seen would lead me to believe he has the skills to translate his game to the NFL, and like any rookie, do so with some hiccups. Every rookie receiver has issues when making the jump, and he’ll be no different. I’m just not sold on Cordarrelle Patterson being that savior, or any other receiver on the roster for that matter.

      I appreciate the fact that we disagree; I always like having conversations like this. I admit that I wanted DeVante Parker with the 11th-overall pick last year, so I don’t feel crazy projecting another wide receiver to the Vikings much later in the draft.

      1. I wouldn’t mind Doctson if he were to ” fall to the Vikings when they select in the third round”.

        But I’m fairly certain that’s not what you meant. I would actually take some issue with the idea that the Vikings need another receiver. I mean…of course we do, but that’s not the real issue with the offense as I see it. The real issue is that every other team tailors their offense to their quarterback and ours is a mixture of being Adrian-centric and subject to old man Turner’s love of all things Air Coryell.

        Teddy is an afterthought in the equation. We already know what his strengths are: shotgun formation, east-west passing game. He has thrived in that situation both in college and at the end of his rookie season.

        So why take a guy who looks like a vertical receiver only? It suggests were not making this offense tailored to Teddy’s strengths. I had the same problem with the Wallace trade last year and those concerns turned out to be pretty valid.

        Take a receiver that plays to Teddy’s strengths and not Turner’s senility. Somebody who can run crossing routes and move the chains.

        Treadwell, Boyd, Shepard.

        1. Austin,while I really hate this pick,you have every right to make it and I respect that.
          I would ask you to think about 2 things.
          Firstly,there was a lot of criticism of this class at the combine,particularly regarding a lack of speed and Bruce Arians has recently commented “it is the worst class in 20 years” in regards to speed.With that in mind teams should have pause for taking any of these guys (except Treadwell) in the first round.
          Secondly,the fact that the Vikings appear to be shopping for a WR in free agency suggests that maybe once they have had a chance to review everything,they realise that the value early in the draft is at positions other than WR.

          1. Thanks, Aussie. We’re allowed to disagree, of course. And I understand/respect your points. The Vikings may draft a defensive tackle, who knows? It’s just tough to gauge their interest and preference at this point.

            I’m excited to see what happens. What direction do you see them going?

            1. I think OT (Conklin) is a possibility,but the value is on Defense.LB & DL are where the talent is.
              If Treadwell falls then that would trigger an interesting dilemma for Rick.In my opinion Treadwell is the only WR worthy of a first round pick.

      2. Beckham was faster, but 3-4 inches shorter, with 3-inches less vertical:

        Name: Odell Beckham, Jr.
        College: Texas Tech Number: 3
        Height: 5-11 Weight: 198
        Position: WR Pos2: KR
        Class/Draft Year: Jr/2014
        40 Low: 4.28 40 Time: 4.38 40 High: 4.49
        Projected Round: 1 Stock: High: Early 1st Low: Lates 1st
        Rated number 3 out of 325 WR’s 14 / 2251 TOTAL

  3. Troy Williamson, Percy Harvin, Cordarelle Patterson, Josh Doctson. Quite the list. Dear lord I hope Spielman doesnt make this mistake.

    1. Ugh! Troy Williamson, that was a head scratcher on draft day.

      Better off waiting until round 2 or 3 if they are going to draft a WR. How bout those Ohio State WR’s? I’d be happy with round 2 – Braxton Miller or Michael Thomas.

      I also like Tylor Boyd out of Pitt in the 2nd round.

      Don’t know much about Da’runnya Wilson but he’s 6’5″ and 224lbs and may be available as late as the 6th round? Project?

  4. Ideally trade down to get two 2nd rounders, better value found 33-50, then get Pat Kirwin fav Boyd. Depending on free agency then get best lLB, safety, or Oline. At 24 I Iike Ragland as much needed thumper, we hv two fast LBs already, I love to see him negate Viking killer Eddie Lacy. He’s a baaaaaaaaaad dude

  5. The value for WR will likely be found between the 2nd and 4th rounds. Like many who has already shared, I’d like to see Boyd and/or Shepard in the 2nd or 3rd round. If Decker, Conklin or Lee are taken come the 23rd pick, I’d like to see them trade down… unless there is a DL that they really like.

    If they were to pick up an extra 2nd and 3rd I could see them pick up a safety, and possibly two WR’s in with their first 4-5 picks.

  6. Oh my !!! The more I listen to you guys , your starting to make a lil sense in maybe trading pick and moving back to 2nd round. Not !!!! Doctson will work for the Vikings , Fuller too. We need wide receiver s.you guys make it sound like Docton has one leg or something ? He will be a good addition to the vikings, period !!! They need first two picks to be wr and wr. And we need to sign this Smith to our offensive line ? Why can’t you see what I see ? Needs !!! We needs widereceiver s ??? I said it days ago. First to picks are going to be widereceiver s watch , mark my words.

    1. Fuller’s frame is in question, and the fact he can’t catch. He is fast though.

  7. I would love if the Vikings get a weapon such as Docton or Treadwell and trade back into the 1st round or early 2nd and get Jaylon Smith he won’t be able to play until 2017 but he could learn from Chad Greenway and then in 2017 give the Vikings a three-headed monster at linebacker with Antony Barr playing defensive end on third down the Vikings defense would be unstoppable and unpredictable with athletes all around.

  8. Looking more like Wr and Wr in first two picks , now that we signed Smith to OL. Yes!!! Nice Move Vikes !!! Now , think about Boyd , fuller , Doctson or even Treadwell on this team. Huh ??? Thought ??? Trade Adrian for Tenns number one pick ? It’s just a thought ? Landing Treadwell ?

    1. All I can say is I’m glad your not in the draft room or front office. Said in good humor. Glad your posting your opinion. I like to see what other fans are thinking even if I don’t agree completely.

      Go Vikings!

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