Peter King’s Final Mock Draft Stuns Vikings Fans

Peter King Has
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Folks aren’t quite sure how we got here, but Peter King’s final mock draft is the granddaddy of them all.

Instead of reaching into Round 1 for Tennessee’s Hendon Hooker, a 3rd-Round draft prospect two months ago, the Minnesota Vikings somehow sit tight with their 23rd overall pick and select Florida’s Anthony Richardson as the QB1 for life after Kirk Cousins, according to King.

Peter King’s Final Mock Draft Stuns Vikings Fans

Richardson falling to Minnesota is the latest installment in the Vikings hypothetical quarterback saga, as almost every passer in this year’s draft has been linked to the team, minus Bryce Yound and perhaps C.J. Stroud at the top. The Vikings have traded up for Kentucky’s Will Levis in some mocks, stayed put for Levis, traded up for Richardson, the Hooker fodder, waited until later rounds for UCLA’s Dorian Thompson-Robinson, for example — and now watched the alleged Richardson tumble.

Mock Draft Stuns
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Last year, at this time on the calendar. King shot for the stars with the Vikings, too, predicting a tumble by cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. to Minnesota. It didn’t happen. We shall see if his Richardson prediction is closer to reality.

King wrote about Richardson in purple, “Easily could go earlier — as high as four to Indianapolis. But the Vikings would be an intriguing spot for the raw Richardson. Kirk Cousins has one playoff win in five Vikings seasons. The math is not in Cousins’ favor. This is year six.”

Quiet Contender
Florida Gators quarterback Anthony Richardson (15) scrambles with the ball during the second half against the Eastern Washington Eagles at Steve Spurrier Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, FL, on Sunday, October 2, 2022. © Matt Pendleton / USA TODAY NETWORK.

Richardson threw 17 touchdown passes to 9 interceptions in 12 games last year and is considered the most athletic physical specimen ever to attend the NFL Combine.

King concluded on the Richardson theory, “[Cousins] will have made $185 million as a Viking, and will be seeking $45 million-plus to re-sign after this season to be sure, guaranteed. Who would be surprised if the Vikings wanted to start fresh in 2024 if this is another one of those years?”

Vikings Have Official
Florida Gators quarterback Anthony Richardson (15) salutes while carrying a bag of Skittles in his mouth while walking on Steve Spurrier-Florida Field during Gator Walk at Steve Spurrier Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, FL on Saturday, September 10, 2022. © Doug Engle / USA TODAY NETWORK.

A Richardson plunge can be classified as a Holy Grail Vikings draft scenario, chiefly because most believe Minnesota would have to trade into the Top 10 to obtain his services. The Vikings trading two 1st-Rounders and a 3rd-Round pick to the Philadelphia Eagles at pick No. 10 was the buzz last week, but King’s projection lights that on fire.

Paying zero draft capital via trade for Richardson, allowing the Gator to watch-and-learn for one season behind Kirk Cousins, and then “letting her rip” in 2024 seems unbelievably ideal.

ESPN’s analytical draft predictor isn’t too high on Richardson falling past pick No. 8, however — probably why King’s casual Vikings link is so stunning.

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Minnesota has a +1600 moneyline to draft Richardson, the fifth-best odds with the draft three days away.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ and The Doors (the band).

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