Dallas Turner Is Another Vikings EDGE Option

Draft Meeting
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While the talk of the offseason continues to be what the Vikings need to do at the quarterback position and how they will handle that role during the NFL Draft, they have also been linked to first-round defensive help. The vast majority of that discussion has revolved around edge rushers, and Dallas Turner represents another option for Minnesota.

Dallas Turner Is Another Vikings EDGE Option

While it is true that Kirk Cousins is a free agent and the Vikings could be without a veteran quarterback, the other reality is that Danielle Hunter may be on his way out. The talented edge rusher is coming off a career-best season with Minnesota, and having already been paid prior to the season, he should be looking for a windfall of money.

Dallas Turner Is
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Should Brian Flores find himself without a top edge rusher in the form of Hunter, the position will be barren as a whole. Marcus Davenport is set to be a free agent, and there’s little incentive to hand money to a player who is rarely pushed to be on the field. D.J. Wonnum is also a free agent, leaving the opportunity to rush the passer almost impossible.

If Minnesota opts against an offensive player at the 11th overall selection, Alabama’s Dallas Turner could be available to them. He is coming off a season that had him named the 2023 SEC Defensive Player of the Year. His ten sacks were the first time he had reached double digits during a single season, and his 14.5 tackles for loss was also a career-high. Across 14 games, Turner put up 53 total tackles and showed a high motor every week.

Vikings Is Sweet
Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy makes a pass against Alabama linebacker Dallas Turner during the first half of the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, on Monday, Jan. 1, 2024.

Pro Football Network summarized Turner’s abilities: “Even with hand-usage improvements, Turner can still strive for more consistency, both with his pass-rushing plan and overall hand precision. But Turner has one of the most complete physical pallets of any EDGE over the past five years, and it yields astronomical upside.

With his blistering speed and gravity-defying bend, Turner can eviscerate tackles at the apex, and his finesse element also enables him to rush from alignment-versatile looks, stunt freely, and stress-blocking angles across the front. But with his elite length, Turner also boasts a menacing power component.

With his hyperactive lateral twitch and fluidity, Turner can widen tackles before exploding into the torso with ruthless long arms and bull rushes. To that end, he’s shown he can scare tackles into flashing their hands with feigned power rushes and then capitalize with swipes and rips. And in pursuit, he’s an albatross with his closing speed and motor.”

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At 11th, Turner represents a player that could step in and play on day one. It’s unrealistic that he would immediately replace Hunter’s production, but he could absolutely develop into that type of player. An edge rusher is a position where that high of a pick does make a good deal of sense, and it’s a positive that Minnesota should have a couple of different options to consider.

Ted Schwerzler is a blogger from the Twin Cities that is focused on all things Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Vikings. He’s active on Twitter and writes weekly for Twins Daily. As a former college athlete and avid sports fan, covering our pro teams with a passion has always seemed like such a natural outlet.