Vikings Rookie Becoming Trendy Pick for Fancy Award

dallas turner
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Quarterbacks dominate NFL headlines but don’t sleep on Dallas Turner’s rookie campaign.

Vikings Rookie Becoming Trendy Pick for Fancy Award

That’s the word from, well, nearly everybody regarding the Minnesota Vikings new pass rusher, a rookie secured in Round 1 of the 2024 NFL Draft after an expensive trade fired off by general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah. Turner was on tap as possibly the first defensive player off the board last month, but he fell into Minnesota’s lap at pick No. 17 following a trade with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Draft Meeting
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And suddenly, Turner is all the rage to win the NFL’s Defensive Rookie of the Year award. Down the line, analysts are lining up to predict Turner as the fancy hardware owner, which would be music to the ears of the Vikings’ front office and coaching staff, plus the team’s fans.

Former NFL general manager Mike Tannenbaum opined on Turner’s DROY stakes this week, “Turner will have a lot of pass-rushing opportunities, which I believe he will take advantage of. I thought he should have gone as high as No. 8 to Atlanta because he has the double-digit sack total ability.”

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

Furthermore, the Tannenbaum theory wasn’t isolated. ESPN’s Jordan Reid followed suit: “Playing in Brian Flores’ defense, Turner is a perfect match, as he will likely be used at multiple spots. His first-step burst and continued expansion of his array of pass-rush moves set him up for early success. Expect Turner to be moved around quite a bit and receive many opportunities to make plays in multiple ways.”

Both men picked Turner for 2024 DROY, while other trendy choices included Laiatu Latu of the Indianapolis Colts and Jared Verse from the Los Angeles Rams.

vikings gm
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Right after the draft, Bleacher Report conducted a similar vote among its staff and split the DROY vote between Turner and Verse. “Other prospects will put up bigger numbers. Some will point toward the Indianapolis Colts’ Laiatu Latu, Minnesota Vikings’ Dallas Turner or Los Angeles Rams’ Jared Verse for their potential sack production,” BR’s Brent Sobleski explained.

Minnesota now showcases tremendous EDGE depth, which is noteworthy because some fans panicked about Danielle Hunter’s departure to the Houston Texans not long ago.

The Vikings haven’t boasted this much pass-rushing beef since Danielle Hunter began developing in 2015 and 2016. In recent years, the purple situation has involved Hunter and another defender like Everson Griffen or Za’Darius Smith, for example — and then that’s about it. In 2024, Turner and newcomer free agents Dallas Turner and Andrew Van Ginkel will outfit Flores’ defensive line edges.

Vikings Rookie
Minnesota Vikings Defensive Coordinator Brian Flores addressed the media from the TCO Performance Center. Flores was hired in February 2023 to take over for Ed Donatel after Minnesota finished 30th in points allowed.

Turner is also the Vegas favorite to win DROY with +400 odds.

He turned 21 in February.

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).

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