Vikings First Round Mock Draft Roundup 1.0
The Vikings have a number of needs heading into the 2020 season, and could address one of them by selecting an impact player with the No. 25 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft. Cornerback, defensive tackle, and offensive line jump out as some of the positions Rick Spielman and Mike Zimmer could look to upgrade with that pick.
Let's look around at the plethora of mock drafts on the internet, focusing on recent iterations, and see who the Vikings are projected to take at No. 25.
Dane Brugler, The Athletic – Georgia OT Isaiah Wilson
The 49ers’ front seven shredded the Vikings’ offensive line in Saturday’s divisional-round playoff victory, finishing with six sacks. If Minnesota elects to move Riley Reiff inside to guard, offensive tackle shoots to the top of the Vikings’ wish list. Wilson has the natural talent that has created buzz in the scouting community.
Chris Trapasso, CBS Sports – Louisville OT Mekhi Becton
The Vikings get Kirk Cousins a left tackle of the future in Becton, who plays like he's much smaller than he really is. And he towers over defensive linemen (6'7", 369).
Luke Easterling, USA Today Draft Wire – Mekhi Becton
Ryan Wilson, CBS Sports – Mekhi Becton
At 6-foot-7, 360 pounds, Becton is a mountain of a man but he moves like someone who weighs more like 260, which pairs nicely with his footwork, balance and strength. Vikings RT Brian O'Neill is coming off a strong sophomore season but Reilly Reiff, 31, is entering the final year of his deal. Becton wouldn't be forced onto the field as a rookie while also providing Minnesota with some much-needed depth.
Walter Cherepinsky, Walter Football – Alabama DL Raekwon Davis
Linval Joseph is still a dominant presence in the interior, but he'll turn 32 next season. He'll decline soon, and the Vikings could use some help next to him in the meantime. Raekwon Davis had a dominant performance in the national championship win over Georgia to cap off his excellent 2017 season in which he logged 8.5 sacks.
Tyler Roman, NBC Sports Washington – Penn State DE Yetur Gross-Matos
Everson Griffen won’t be back in Minnesota unless he takes a big pay cut, so the team goes with the Virginia native Gross-Matos to replace his production. Gross-Matos shows up every time you turn on the film as a guy that has a wide array of moves and finishes plays. He had 17.5 sacks over the last two years and could be a steal this late in the first round.
Kristopher Knox, Bleacher Report – Florida CB CJ Henderson
Matt Miller, Bleacher Report – CJ Henderson
The Minnesota Vikings could easily look at offensive tackle at this spot, but none on the board rank as a value at No. 25 overall. The same goes for addressing the edge-rusher or defensive tackle position as the team looks to add youth. Value and need meet when looking at cornerback. The Vikings have invested heavily in the position, but the regression of Xavier Rhodes makes this a priority. Florida’s CJ Henderson has excellent athletic traits and the instincts in coverage to be an attacking ball hawk. He perfectly fits the style profile the Vikings attach to the cornerback position with his speed and toughness in coverage.
Benjamin Solak, The Draft Network – CJ Henderson
The Minnesota Vikings going after a first-round cornerback? I hope they got the high sign from Mrs. Spielman first. But the Vikings actually need it this time. Xavier Rhodes’ play fell off a cliff this year and it costs a lot to retain him and the hope he gets better — Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander are both on contract years and could end up on other squads. The Vikings are decently prepared for this, with the early-drafted Mike Hughes and talented Holton Hill behind the starters. But if I know Minnesota, that isn’t enough. CJ Henderson is a top-flight cover man, even if some of his instincts need honing and his tackling needs improvement.
Kyle Crabbs, The Draft Network – South Carolina DT Javon Kinlaw
This still feels like a no brainer. The Minnesota Vikings have explosive power coming off the edge — putting some explosive power at the 3T position seems like a wise move. Javon Kinlaw is a late bloomer who is playing his best football late in his college career. Cornerback warrants some consideration here as well, but Kinlaw provides Minnesota with a boost in the pass rush to help counter the passing attacks in Green Bay and Detroit, which Minnesota must account for twice each season.
Malcolm Michaels, Sportsnaut – Clemson CB AJ Terrell
Minnesota’s blowout loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Divisional Playoffs made a couple things clear. It needs more help at cornerback and must get younger with an aging roster. Mike Zimmer is expected to do just that. Someone who has not been afraid to draft corners in the past, expect Zimmer to get into Rick Spielman’s ear ahead of the 2020 NFL Draft. If so, the 6-foot-1 Terrell makes sense. He has plus-level ability in press and man coverage, something the Vikes value. This would be a perfect fit for Zimmer’s defense.