Vikings Fans Already Split over Draft Preference

Ron Johnson-USA TODAY Sports.

Think it’s a no-brainer for the Minnesota Vikings to, alas, draft a quarterback of the future in the 1st Round of the 2024 NFL Draft?

You’ll get pushback.

Vikings Fans Already Split over Draft Preference

The Vikings’ defense climbed 13 spots via DVOA ranking from 2022 to 2023, but some of the team’s fans just don’t acknowledge it. Minnesota’s defense performed poorly down the stretch of 2023, so many have convinced themselves that the personnel needs a total overhaul.

These are the numbers:

Vikings Defense,
NFL Ranking,
Per DVOA:

2022 = 24th
2023 = 11th

Fans Already Split
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

Regardless, some Vikings faithful want the franchise to invest in an impact defensive lineman like Illinois’ Jer’Zhan Newton with the 11th overall pick in April — quarterback be damned. General manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell took over two years ago, and if they don’t draft a quarterback of the future in this draft, many wonder when they’ll do it.

The time for Kirk Cousins’ successor feels appropriate right now, even if Minnesota retains Cousins for a year or two. Because, again, if not now on the rookie quarterback — when?

Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports.

Still, defense is on the brain for some. The Purple Code‘s Rick Sosa tweeted Tuesday, “Brian Flores name nowhere to be found in the first wave of interview requests for HC openings … draw your own conclusions … Vikings need to open the checkbook and let him select a DT with pick # 11.”

A commenter on the X app, @3FourthsGeek, mentioned this week, “I would much rather see the Vikings go for a disruptive DL at that spot if a top tier QB isn’t available and then if Nix is there in Round 2, sure. But that’s Ponder level reach at 11.”

Why the Vikings Would
Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Eric Hughes dropped a compromise alternative, “What if, the Vikings draft defense at 11, and work their way, back into the 1st, and possibly look at McCarthy, Nix or Penix??”

Most will likely circle the wagons for a quarterback as the draft nears, especially if Kirk Cousins is no longer on the roster. He’s scheduled to hit free agency in two months, and if the Vikings let him walk, a new quarterback — from somewhere — will be required.

Cousins will remain the Vikings’ primary offseason domino, and if he’s re-signed, fans will debate quarterback or defense for the next few months. You’ve been warned.

Photo By Bruce Kluckhohn-US PRESSWIRE Copyright (c) 2004 Bruce Kluckhohn.

The last time the Vikings drafted a quarterback with the 11th overall pick, it netted Daunte Culpepper. Twenty-five years ago.


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,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

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

Share: