|RB MICHAEL BENNETT|
Many thought he wouldnt be there. Many others thought the Vikings had to address defense with their first pick. Instead, with the 27th pick, the Vikings chose running back Michael Bennett out of Wisconsin.
Shortly after being picked, he proclaimed himself as always being a Vikings fan despite his uncle, Tony Bennett, playing for the Packers. The color purple brought him into the ring of Vikings fans, but the 27th pick in 2001 draft made him a Viking.
Bennett entered the draft this season after completing his junior year, his first year as a starter after spending two years behind Ron Dayne. He is a dramatically different back from Dayne. Despite only 10 games as a starter, he ranked 10th on the schools all-time rushing list with 1,979 yards.
"Im going to have to come in and learn some things, but I think I can play right away," Bennett said.
Bennett is an extremely quick athlete, a track athlete at Wisconsin, much in the mold of the recently retired Robert Smith. He was also an option as a kick returner in college, but the Vikings wont likely explore him there immediately, as they look to find their starter at running back. He is often referred to as a home-run hitter, not a grinder, but not shying from contact.
He is a patient runner, waiting for the blocks to develop and similar in pass protection.
"I would probably consider a guy, a Fred Taylor or a Robert Smith-type guy," Bennett said when asked to compare himself to another player.
However, Vikings coach Dennis Green said Bennett has choppier leg motion and is quicker to reach top speed because he isnt as tall.
"We got a gift," Green said. "We had Michael Bennett rated as the 10th player on the board There is probably not a more explosive player on the field."
Bennett Draft Profile
Viking Update Top Stories
Podcast: Moss returned, Zimmer refreshedViking Update publisher Tim Yotter and Star Tribune columnist Jim Souhan talk about Randy Moss, Mike Zimmer, Sam Bradford vs. Teddy Bridgewater, and MVP odds.
Viking Update8:38 AM
Jones knows his role, unlike in Green BayDatone Jones never found his calling in Green Bay, making position switch after position switch. Now with the Minnesota Vikings, the former first-round pick is excited to get a…
Viking Update7:16 AM
Murray: I’m getting the ballLatavius Murray has fallen behind Minnesota Vikings rookie Dalvin Cook while the veteran recovers from surgery, but Murray is not backing away from taking a job he believes is his.
Viking Update4:03 AM
Vikings join growing trend with campThe Minnesota Vikings join a growing trend of having NFL rookies report to training camp before veterans.
Viking UpdateYesterday at 1:35 PM