When the NFL Draft begins selections in Arlington, Tex., April 26, the Minnesota Vikings have the No. 30 pick in the first round.
Here is an in-depth look at the team’s needs, offseason changes, potential best fit and the selections by NFLDraftScout.com’s experts.
Who would you pick and why?
TOP 5 NEEDS
- Tackle: The Vikings need to remember that it was their commitment to the offensive line that got them from 8-8 in 2016 to 13-3 in 2017. They signed two starting tackles in free agency and drafted their starting center in the third round. But the overhaul isn’t complete. With Mike Remmers better suited to play guard than right tackle, the Vikings need to be thinking about adding an elite right tackle to the roster.
- Cornerback: On the other side of the ball, the Vikings need to constantly replenish the cornerback position if they hope to compete with the likes of Aaron Rodgers and Matthew Stafford. Even if soon-to-be 40-year-old Terence Newman returns this season, the Vikings still need young depth behind Xavier Rhodes, Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander, who shared the nickel back job with Newman last year.
- Defensive line: Sheldon Richardson gives the Vikings another elite starter on one of the best lines in football. But the Vikings are always looking to add depth and fresh legs along the defensive line.
- Linebacker: The Vikings have two excellent three-down linebackers in Anthony Barr and Eric Kendricks. But they could use competition for the weak-side spot in the base defense, as well as overall depth.
- Safety: Andrew Sendejo has been the ultimate overachiever ever since head coach Mike Zimmer arrived in 2014. But how long can he keep it up? The Vikings will need to upgrade that spot at some point and should consider adding someone with the ability to challenge for the starting job.
–BEST FIT: Mike McGlinchey, T, Notre Dame. Some wonder if McGlinchey will still be there at 30. Others have him falling out of the first round. The Vikings are in a good spot to make an unglamorous, but necessary pick to bolster the offensive line and give quarterback Kirk Cousins the best opportunity to succeed. Vikings general manager Rick Spielman loves drafting Notre Dame guys. He’s had his share of success with the likes of Harrison Smith and Kyle Rudolph.
–Rob Rang: Connor Williams, T, Texas. The retirement of longtime starting right guard Joe Berger further muddies the offensive line charged with protecting splashy free-agent signee Kirk Cousins. Williams has the frame and physical playing style to handle any of the four exterior positions, offering the team a lot of flexibility.
–Dane Brugler: Will Hernandez, G, Texas-El Paso. If Hernandez is still available at this point in the draft, it would be a good mix of both answering a need and drafting the best player available for the Vikings.
FANS ON THE CLOCK, ON THE RECORD
OK, it’s your turn. Tell us in the comments section who you would pick and why. Check out top 1,000 players rated by NFLDraftScout.com, including combine and pro day workouts, biographies, scouting reports.