Who NOT to Draft in Round 1 | VT Writers’ Picks

Tennessee quarterback Hendon Hooker (5) shakes hands with Peyton Manning's son Marshall Manning before Tennessee's game against Alabama in Neyland Stadium in Knoxville, Tenn., on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022. © Brianna Paciorka/News Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK.

VikingsTerritory writers were asked to provide one single draft pick apiece for the Minnesota Vikings to avoid in Round 1. They were instructed to choose a trade-up, trade back, or remain at the No. 23 spot.

Each writer somehow came up with a different selection — a totally random outcome. And for curious minds, these are the eight players the Vikings should draft, according to the same group.

Who NOT to Draft in Round 1 | VT Writers

The NFL draft occurs on April 27th in Kansas City, so 10 days away.

1. Anthony Richardson (QB)


Florida Gators quarterback Anthony Richardson (15) warms up before the game against the Eastern Washington Eagles at Steve Spurrier Field at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, FL on Sunday, October 2, 2022. [Matt Pendleton/Gainesville Sun. USA TODAY NETWORK.

VT Writer = Adam New

I wouldn’t hate if Anthony Richardson slid down the board to the Vikings at 23. Assuming that’s unlikely, the Vikings would have to trade up, perhaps all the way to the third overall pick. It’s a big no from me.

The first thing Kevin O Connell says when asked what he looks for in a QB is always accuracy. That’s not Richardson. If the Vikings had a deep roster with every position covered, maybe it would be worth a gamble. They don’t, so Richardson is not for me.

2. Jahmyr Gibbs (RB)


Mar 23, 2023; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; Running back Jahmyr Gibbs during Pro Day at Hank Crisp Indoor Practice Facility on the campus of the University of Alabama. Mandatory Credit: Gary Cosby Jr.-Tuscaloosa News Ncaa Football University Of Alabama Pro Day

VT Writer = Ali Siddiqui

While the Vikings will very likely move on from Dalvin Cook, and Gibbs could be an excellent replacement for him, they should not draft a running back in the 1st Round.

If he’s the best player available at 23, he could be very intriguing, but the Vikings have more significant needs and can take an RB later on.

3. Quentin Johnston (WR)


Dec 31, 2022; Glendale, Arizona, USA; TCU Horned Frogs wide receiver Quentin Johnston (1) runs after a catch in the second quarter against the Michigan Wolverines of the 2022 Fiesta Bowl at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

VT Writer = Cole Smith

The 1st-Round prospect the Vikings should avoid at all costs is Quentin Johnston. With questions about his ability to run the entire route tree, I’m hesitant about using the first pick.

The Vikings may not need another all-world receiver with Jefferson on the other side. But if it were up to me, I’d look in another direction at addressing WR2.

4. Hendon Hooker (QB)


Oct 15, 2022; Knoxville, Tennessee, USA; Tennessee Volunteers quarterback Hendon Hooker (5) passes the ball against the Alabama Crimson Tide during the first quarter at Neyland Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

VT Writer = Dustin Baker

The Vikings should be having fascinating and fun conversations about Hendon Hooker — regarding his selection after the 1st Round.

It’s not wise to draft an old quarterback in Round 1, especially one recovering from a bad knee. The team appears poised to move on from Kirk Cousins, but it should conduct business the smart way — draft a normal-aged rookie quarterback or spend 3rd-Round draft capital on the comparatively-geriatric guy.

Reaching for Hooker in Round 1 would resemble one of the Vikings bizarre quarterback remedies of yesteryear. Kwesi Adofo-Mensah should live up to his value-based ethos and draft a cornerback or wide receiver in Round 1, with eyes on Hooker later.

5. A Wide Receiver

steam for new wr2
Nov 11, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; Southern California Trojans wide receiver Jordan Addison (3) following the victory against the Colorado Buffaloes at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

VT Writer = Kyle Joudry

Truth be told, I’m no draft expert. My knowledge of draft prospects is shallow. So, instead of identifying someone to for sure avoid, I’ll name a position: wide receiver.

As I’ve said multiple times, I’m a K.J. Osborn believer. I’d far, far prefer to team invest in either edge rusher or corner, the two most important positions on defense.

6. Bryan Bresee (DT)


Mar 1, 2023; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Clemson defensive lineman Bryan Bresee (DL02) during the NFL Scouting Combine at the Indiana Convention Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

VT Writer = Janik Eckardt

The defensive tackle is a player to avoid because of injury concerns and limited production. If the Vikings want to upgrade the defensive line, they should target a different player.

7. Jalin Hyatt (WR)


Tennessee wide receiver Jalin Hyatt during Tennessee Football Pro Day at the Anderson Training Facility in Knoxville, Tenn. on Thursday, March 30, 2023. © Brianna Paciorka/News Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK.

VT Writer = Josh Frey

I’d probably avoid Jalin Hyatt, especially at 23. He’s great as go-route guy, so if you can get him in the second or third, then that’s fine, but he doesn’t have a very developed route tree. There are better receivers if that’s where the Vikings want to go.

8. Will Levis (QB)


Mar 4, 2023; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Kentucky quarterback Will Levis (QB08) participates in drills at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Prediction Maker = Ted Schwerzler

Let’s go with Will Levis. The Kentucky quarterback seems like a decent enough prospect, but he’s sitting in a weird middle ground. Not clearly one of the top three prospects, but not the value pick Hendon Hooker is either, trading up to get him seems like a mistake.

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).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by OverTheCap.com.