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2018 Minnesota Vikings Draft Class

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2 hours ago, gopherwrestler said:

I missed seeing you around!

 😲 

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2 hours ago, gopherwrestler said:

I missed seeing you around!

I hope this is the only “miss” in this thread and that everything else is a hit.

 

Carry on.

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We can better handle ourselves  once the emotional high runs off. The grades I've seen so far probably have some emotional steam to them.

That being said:

 Hughes: B

 O'Neill: B

Holmes: C

Conklin: D 

Carlson: A

Gossett: B

Downs: C

Aruna: NA (I prefer not to grade him because I know nothing about him)

Grade: B. I really can't complain. Where we were picking, it's going to be hard to get a day 1 starter, minus the kicker. 

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10 minutes ago, SteelKing728 said:

We can better handle ourselves  once the emotional high runs off. The grades I've seen so far probably have some emotional steam to them.

That being said:

 Hughes: B

 O'Neill: B

Holmes: C

Conklin: D 

Carlson: A

Gossett: B

Downs: C

Aruna: NA (I prefer not to grade him because I know nothing about him)

Grade: B. I really can't complain. Where we were picking, it's going to be hard to get a day 1 starter, minus the kicker. 

What’s your criteria for grading? 

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Just now, marshpit23 said:

What’s your criteria for grading? 

My own bias without the emotional high xD

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15 minutes ago, SteelKing728 said:

My own bias without the emotional high xD

I’m in favor of low highs and high lows, emotionally.  Personally, I cannot handout grades until I see our draft picks/ udfa’s perform. I don’t have a lot of insight/evaluation prior to fit/performance related to the Vikings’ scheme. 

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31 minutes ago, marshpit23 said:

I’m in favor of low highs and high lows, emotionally.  Personally, I cannot handout grades until I see our draft picks/ udfa’s perform. I don’t have a lot of insight/evaluation prior to fit/performance related to the Vikings’ scheme. 

I can respect that. I try not to grade a team right now when they trade for future picks. It's no guarentee that Green Bay will have a better draft than New Orleans next year simply because GB has their 1st round pick.

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Posted (edited)

B grade overall.

Player quality was good throughout, B+/A-.

Didn’t like the process in terms of how they addressed the OL. The way the draft fell on the first 2 days did them no favors, but CB was a luxury pick this year, and OL was a screamingly obvious need. Taking Hughes (who’s a very good pick otherwise) meant that they were left with O’Neill as the only major investment in their only major need.

Day 3 was better (except for trading up for a kicker) and the UDFA class is promising, so C+ for the managerial side of things

Pick by pick:

Hughes: A. Seems like clearly the best CB available for Zimmer’s system (Josh Jackson is a pure zone corner). Can’t remember the last time the Vikings had a quick twitch CB with ball skills. Once he gets to play, I’ll bet he leads the team in INTs. The kick returns are a plus. Good value for late 1st. Scheme-wise, I hope he can play in the slot (he hasn’t). He has the build and movement skills of a very good NCB. 

O’Neill: B. Ignoring the question of how this pick improves the OL today, O’Neill is a good kind of project. His limitation is play strength / bulk. That’s fixable, and it’s understandable that it hasn’t been fixed yet (and therefore not worrisome that it still needs fixing), since he was a TE just 3 years ago. I was interested in Kolton Miller for similar reasons of long-term upside, but didn’t watch O’Neill until this weekend. Compared to Miller, he’s a weaker run blocker at the point of attack (less grip strength), but he’s much better at the second level and in space. Outside zone run plays are Dalvin Cook’s meal ticket, and the cornerstone of DeFillipo’s run game — if they can get O’Neill next to a LG who can run (Easton’s good), they’ll be very effective. In pass blocking, O’Neill has much cleaner footwork than Miller. He moves smoothly — faster 3-cone time than Mackenzie Alexander. With the limitations on practice time from the new CBA, it’s probably easier to build strength than rework technique, so the fact that O’Neill is already pretty good technically is a plus. 

Scheme-wise, I want him at LT long term, with Reiff pushed over to RT. Hopefully, they’re patient enough not to play O’Neill until he’s ready, and they leave him on one side to build his confidence, so his development isn’t ruined like Clemmings was.

Holmes: B. Sounds like they’re going to play him at DT, so he’s Richardson’s backup and comes in on 3rd downs next to Sheldon to rush the passer. I was expecting more of a true DE/DT pick, replacing all of what Robison does, not just the 3rd down role. Most of the other options by that point had bad injury histories (Sweat, Ejiofor, Fitts). Holmes is healthy, has a great frame but only pretty good explosion and agility testing. He played a lot as an interior pass rusher last year. There aren’t many highlights but his job would be to collapse the pocket, and that only shows up on film if you watch complete game cut ups, which I haven’t. He was a very good run stopper by PFF charting. Overall, this seems like a project pick, harder to project even than O’Neill given that he’ll be changing positions. I have more faith in the Vikings DL coaches than the OL, so there’s some optimism, but we’ll see. 

Conklin: B. Good fit as a receiving TE2. They need a red zone weapon and he’s made some amazing catches on fade routes. I mocked them Herndon and Samuels but Conklin should be fine instead. He’s not especially fast but he’s a very good jumper and he has excellent body control in the air. Solid value in the 5th. 

Carlson: D. By all reports he’s good, and Forbath had some serious limitations last year. I don’t hate the idea of upgrading the position on a rookie contract. But I don’t like drafting a kicker, don’t like trading up in the draft, and absolutely hate trading up to draft a kicker. 

Gossett: A. Not a project, but a guy who’s played a lot and played well. No injury concerns, versatile and experienced at several positions, scheme fit as a zone run blocker. Did well in one-on-one drills at the Senior Bowl, 3rd highest OL grade in the drills behind Hernandez and Wynn. Should be at least a solid backup. 

Aruna: A.  Fast, explosive, raw DE. This isn’t another Odenigbo or Weatherly type of pretty good athlete — Aruna’s in Clowney territory in terms of his combination of size, explosion and speed. Next best thing to drafting Josh Sweat, and without the injury red flag. Aruna played out of position last year when his team switched to a 3-4 and made him a DL. Was much more effective as a 4-3 DE. He’ll be a project, he’s only been playing football for a few years. But the potential is there. With Griffen, Hunter, Aruna and Bower, the Vikings could have a terrifyingly athletic group of edge rushers. 

Downs: B. LB who looks like he might’ve gone in round 3 if it wasn’t for his knee injury. Plays fast, hits hard, creates turnovers. If he recovers, he might challenge Gedeon for the base WLB job. At least he’d be a big upgrade for nickel LB depth. 

I won’t write up the UDFAs but they got a very good group including Holton Hill and Hercules Mata’afa. 

...

I think it’ll be hard to judge the impact of this class until O’Neill and Hughes are starting, meaning 2019 or 2020. They added a lot of talent and athleticism, that much is obvious from day one. Unfortunately, I think they missed an opportunity to immediately improve the one part of the team that’s most likely to lose them games this year. 

Still, they’re returning almost everyone from a roster that went 13-3, with major upgrades at QB and DT. Even if this draft is mostly an investment in depth and future development, that’s in keeping with the approach that built this team in the first place. 

Edited by Krauser

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Posted (edited)

**I know that we already have the thread to grade the draft, but this is a thread I've put together every year as a one-stop shop for information on the draft that can be referenced in future years as well**

Draft Pick Highlight Video

1.30: Mike Hughes [CB] Central Florida - Aggregate #27
2.62: Brian O'Neil [T] Pittsburgh - Aggregate #67
4.102: Jalyn Holmes [DL] Ohio State - Aggregate #130
5.157: Tyler Conklin [TE] Central Michigan - Aggregate #181

5.167: Daniel Carlson [K] Auburn - Aggregate #185
6.213: Colby Gosset [G] Appalachian State - Aggregate #158
6.218: Ade Aruna [EDGE] Tulane - Aggregate #176
7.225: Devante Downs [LB] California - Aggregate #NR

UDFA: Holton Hill [CB] Texas - Aggregate #92
UDFA: Hercules Mata'afa [DL] Washington State - Aggregate #120
UDFA: Korey Robertson [WR] Southern Miss - Aggregate #205
UDFA: Roc Thomas [RB] Jacksonville State- Aggregate #221
UDFA: Tray Matthews [SAF]
Auburn - Aggregate #313
UDFA: Mike Boone [RB] Cincinnati - Aggregate #325

UDFA: Kamryn Pettway [RB] Auburn - Aggregate #NR
UDFA: Jake Weineke [WR] South Dakota State - Aggregate #NR
UDFA: Armanti Foreman [WR] Texas - Aggregate #NR
UDFA: Jeff Badet [WR] Oklahoma - Aggregate #NR
UDFA: Tyler Hoppes [TE] Nebraska - Aggregate #NR

UDFA: Christopher Gonzalez [C] San Jose State - Aggregate #NR
UDFA: Jonathan Wynn [EDGE] Vanderbilt - Aggregate #NR
UDFA: Garret Dooley [LB] Wisconsin - Aggregate #NR

TRADES

MIN: 4.102 (Jalyn Holmes) + 6.180 (Traded to NYJ)
TB: 3.94 (Alex Cappa)

MIN: 5.157 (Tyler Conklin)
NYJ: 5.167 (Traded to MIN) + 7.225 (Traded to MIN)

MIN: 5.167 (Daniel Carlson) + 7.225 (Davante Downs)
NYJ: 6.180 (Foley Fatukasi) + 6.204 (Trenton Cannon)




 

Edited by rpmwr19
formatting

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A definite Auburn flair to the draft and UDFA

Carlson, Thomas, Pettway, Matthews

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Pro Football Focus Grading

1 (30) Mike Hughes, CB, UCF, 88.6
2 (62) Brian O’Neill, OT, Pittsburgh, 83.5
5 (157) Tyler Conklin, TE, Central Michigan, 77.0
5 (167) Daniel Carlson, K, Auburn, n/a
6 (213) Colby Gossett, G, App. State, 81.5
6 (218) Ade Aruna, DI, Tulane, 49.4
7 (225) Devante Downs, LB, California, 81.6

Day 1: The Minnesota Vikings added to their secondary with UCF cornerback Mike Hughes. There were few more talented corners in this draft than Hughes, who allowed a passer rating of just 40.7 over his college career when targeted. He surrendered just one touchdown an wasn’t beaten for a pass longer than 21 yards in his entire 2017 season. Hughes also adds value as a return man, though that becomes less and less relevant as the league edges ever closer to eliminating the kick off entirely. Hughes does have some off-field character concerns, but his play on the field is well worth a first-round pick and attacks a clear area of need for the Vikings who are trying to find players to complement Harrison Smith at safety and Xavier Rhodes at corner.

Day 2: The Vikings traded out of the third round late in the day, so their only Day 2 pick was spent on Brian O’Neill, an offensive tackle out of Pittsburgh. The team will be hoping that they fare better with this Pitt tackle than they did with T.J. Clemmings, and O’Neill allowed just nine total pressures in 2017 for the eighth-best pass blocking efficiency score in the draft class. The Vikings offensive line is still a work in progress and could definitely use an upgrade at tackle, allowing them to move Mike Remmers inside to guard on a permanent basis. O’Neill will likely have every opportunity to prove he can continue his pass blocking at the next level.

Day 3: The Vikings went back to the offensive line in Round 6 with G Colby Gossett, a player who had four-straight years of impressive PFF grading. He played 3,162 career snaps in college and allowed just 36 total pressures over four years. They traded up in the fifth round to grab a kicker in Auburn’s Daniel Carlson, who was the second-highest graded kicker in the nation last season at PFF.

Overall grade: Below average

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