5 Players Vikings Could Target on Day 3 of Draft

Purdue Boilermakers running back Tyrone Tracy Jr. (3) celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the NCAA football game against the Fresno State Bulldogs, Saturday, Sept. 2, 2023, at Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette, Ind. Fresno State Bulldogs won 39-35. © Alex Martin/Journal and Courier / USA TODAY NETWORK.

Rounds 1-3 are in the books for the 2024 NFL Draft, with four more to go on Saturday.

5 Freaky Draft Outcomes for the Vikings

The Minnesota Vikings are scheduled to pick five times on the draft’s final day after selecting quarterback J.J. McCarthy and EGDE rusher Dallas Turner on Thursday night.

Minnesota has a few roster needs, and these are players the club could target, ranked in ascending order of likelihood (No. 1 = most likely target).

5. T.J. Tampa (CB)
Iowa State

Iowa State defensive back T.J. Tampa stands for a photo during media day at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames, Friday, Aug. 4, 2023. © Zach Boyden-Holmes/The Register / USA TODAY NETWORK.

Tampa would rank higher on this list, but there’s a realistic chance he’s the first pick off the board on Saturday morning. He probably shouldn’t have fallen this far. Think of it this way: Tampa probably won’t be available to Minnesota at pick No. 108, but fans can dream.

If he’s there for Minnesota, Tampa will provide high IQ and a long-bodied presence in the secondary.

4. Javon Baker (WR)
Central Florida

Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports

Like Tampa, Baker might depart the draft early Saturday morning, disqualifying his availability for the Vikings. But he’d make a fantastic WR3 candidate if no team takes the plunge.

VikingsTerritory’s Janik Eckardt wrote about Baker a couple of weeks ago, “Baker requires some refinement and must improve the necessary fundamentals to complement his solid physical traits, but he has the potential to play a role in Minnesota’s offense right away. With Jefferson and Addison surely demanding a ton of attention from opposing defenses, T.J. Hockenson is another receiving threat; once he is healthy, Baker could take advantage of some favorable matchups.”

The Vikings also met with Baker earlier this month.

3. Tyrone Tracy (RB)
Purdue

Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports.

Tracy tabulated 848 yards from scrimmage last year on a trashy Purdue team, featuring 6.4 yards per carry. FantasyPro‘s Thor Nystrom compared to him Miles Sanders, a decent comp for a Vikings’ ground game that needs repair.

The good news is that Tracy could be available to Minnesota even into Round 6.

2. Christian Mahogany (OG)
Boston College

Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports.

One large roster mystery remains: left guard. Dalton Risner, the left guard from 2023, hasn’t re-signed in Minnesota, and no other startable options exist besides Blake Brandel.

Guards can often be grabbed from mid-rounds and thrust into the starting lineup sooner than most. Mahogany can be that for Minnesota.

1. Mekhi Wingo (DT)
LSU

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports.

Wingo is explosive and high-motored but needs pass-rushing refinement. That’s kind of the story of Vikings defensive tackles for years. At this late in the draft — all the high-profile DTs flew off the board on Friday — Wingo might be the top option.

Otherwise, Minnesota will roll with Jonathan Bullard, Jerry Tillery, Jaquelin Roy, and Jonah Williams and hope for the best, basically their modus operandi with back-to-back coaching staffs.

Wingo would provide a small glimmer of hope at DT.


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 MIN 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.

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