The Day Three Vikings Picks
The Minnesota Vikings (so far) have selected six times on day three of the NFL Draft. Contrary to any jokes that have been made over the past couple months, they do not hold any seventh round choices, either, after trading back into the sixth round at No. 199. Here is a quick breakdown of each day three prospect and what they may bring the Vikes.
No. 119, Kene Nwangwu-RB-UNC
This is quite a bit higher than Nwangwu was projected to go. He carried just 144 times at Iowa State, but the Vikings are clearly betting on his explosive playmaking in the return game. The Vikings special teams were abysmal in 2020, and this is an obvious attempt to improve. In his four-year collegiate career, Nwangwu returned 92 kicks and took one to the house. Because of this, it makes sense for the Vikings to value him higher than others.
No. 125, Camryn Bynum-CB-California
Mike Zimmer is happy. The Vikings grab their first (and only) defensive back at 125, and Camryn Bynum could bring high potential with him. Had his 2020 season been more impressive, he probably would have gone much sooner than this. From 2017-19 he had 26 pass defenses. Minnesota won’t be asking him to do too much with the core they already have, but he will certainly see some reps in the rotation. Bynum thrived as a ballhawk at Cal and his playmaking makes him an intriguing pick.
No. 134, Janarius Robinson-DE-Florida State
The Vikings doubling up on pass-rushers shouldn’t be much of a surprise. They will probably use a rotational system at defensive end opposite of Danielle Hunter, and Janarius Robinson should see reps in that rotation. Robinson has plenty of traits that should translate to a great player, but he just hasn’t been able to put it all together to this point. That said, very few have had success under the current Florida State regime.
No. 157, Ihmir Smith-Marsette-WR-Iowa
Ihmir Smith-Marsette’s speed could make him a great fit in the slot alongside Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen. However, Smith-Marsette also brings decent size at 6’1, so they could mix up their sets by putting him on the outside and Jefferson in the slot. If this pick proves to be a hit, Minnesota may also have a long-term successor to Thielen depending on what happens with his contract situation.
No. 168, Zach Davidson-TE-Central Missouri
The obvious reason for this selection is that the Vikings could use an athletic blocker out of the tight end position. Zach Davidson brings that. The storyline that people should keep an eye on, though, is that Davidson brings one of the strangest versatilities to a football field. Along with being a tight end, he was a relatively successful punter for Central Missouri.
No. 199, Jaylen Twyman-DT-Pittsburgh
For its value, this may actually prove to be one of the best picks of the entire draft. Jaylen Twyman earned second-round projections in tons of mocks, and even first-round selections in a couple. He certainly would have been taken in this range had he not opted out of the 2020 season. In 2019, though, he racked up 10.5 sacks and 12 TFL. He is an absolute menace out of the 3T position, and the Vikings will certainly find a place for him.