Lost Draft Pick Returns to the Vikings

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Cutdown day is when teams have to let almost half of their roster go just to get down from 90 to 53 players in order to stay under the NFL’s roster limit. The Vikings had to make some tough decisions. Receiver Jalen Reagor was released after one year with the organization, tight end Ben Sims was cut and claimed by the Packers, and lineman Vederian Lowe was traded to the New England Patriots.

Lost Draft Pick Returns to the Vikings

One of those cuts, 36 to be exact, was rookie running back DeWayne McBride, the only player of Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s draft class who didn’t make the 53-man roster. Some folks were disappointed because they had high hopes for the NCAA’s leading rusher, and he couldn’t fulfill those.

lost draft
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Fast forward one day, and it turns out that they don’t have to say goodbye because he returned. McBride is stashed on the practice squad, the Vikings announced.

The following 12 players made the practice squad, according to the team:

  • C Alan Ali
  • CB C.J. Coldon
  • DL Sheldon Day
  • WR Lucky Jackson
  • WR Trishton Jackson
  • RB DeWayne McBride
  • DL T.J. Smith
  • WR Thayer Thomas
  • OLB Luiji Vilain
  • OLB Benton Whitley
  • CB Jaylin Williams
  • CB Joejuan Williams

The players are stashed on the practice squad, and the Vikings can call them up for three games per season. In addition to that, the coaching staff can oversee their development, and if someone significantly improves throughout the year, they can be signed to the roster.

The one risk is that other teams can poach the players if they feel like they can upgrade their team or need a replacement in case of injury. However, the player must be put on the 53-man roster to do that.

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McBride now has the chance to prove the coaches and the front office wrong by performing well in practice, especially because running back is an injury-prone position, and he might be needed to contribute at any given time.

The rookie played in all three preseason contests and recorded only 70 yards on 20 carries, although it should be noted that the offensive line didn’t particularly help him throughout those games. His best game was the last one against the Arizona Cardinals, in which he received some more reps with the backup line compared to the previous games when the majority of his runs were behind the badly struggling third-stringers.

A positive note, to some extent, is that McBride caught a pass for 11 yards. That is not much, but he caught only five passes in his three years at UAB, and it is a big concern for him if he can be a functioning part of the passing game.

Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports.

His receiver qualities are certainly a thing to work on while on the practice squad. There is a decent chance that it made the difference for him between staying on the roster and accepting the spot on the practice squad.

In the meantime, the Vikings signed Myles Gaskin, a veteran running back with plenty of experience in the NFL and a capable pass catcher out of the backfield. He will slot in with the backups Ty Chandler and Kene Nwangwu behind starter Alexander Mattison.

McBride turned 22 in July, and his chapter in Minnesota is not over yet.

Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt