The Reviews Are In

Just as doing a mock draft can get widely different results from different analysts, giving final grades on the 2006 draft for the Vikings also had widely varied results.

Most football people will tell you that you can't truly judge a draft until two or three years after the fact. What may look like a reach may be viewed as a wise move three years down the road and the "can't miss" tag that accompanies some players on draft day becomes "bust" some time later.

Much like mock drafts that precede the draft, giving draft grades immediately after the draft is highly speculatory. Different evaluators will see different things and, in the case of the Vikings, the differences of opinion couldn't be more across the board.

The one thing pretty much everyone agrees on is that Chad Greenway was the right pick at No. 17 for the Vikings in the first round -- a need matched with a player's approximate draft value. But after that, it gets pretty dicey.

Pete Prisco of NFL.com loved the Vikings' draft -- giving a draft grade of B+. That represented the highest grade of any team in the NFC North and only seven teams were given a higher draft grade than that.

The Sporting News War Room gave the Vikings a good grade on Greenway and Cedric Griffin, but called Ryan Cook a "surprise pick" that they had figured as a fifth- or sixth-round selection. They also thought the Vikings gave up too much for Tarvaris Jackson.

Mel Kiper gave the Vikings a C+ draft grade -- only 11 teams got a worse score -- but he said much of the draft hinged on Jackson. Both he and draft-day analyst Ron Jaworski raved about Jackson's potential, but he too felt that the Vikings may have pulled the trigger a little early on making the deal.

Then there is Nolan Nawrocki from Pro Football Weekly. To say he hated the draft is an understatement. He gave the Vikings a D- for the draft -- by far the worst grade of any team. How bad was it? No other team got a grade worse than a C-. He was especially critical of the Jackson pick, calling it "an embarrassment in the second round."

As most football people will tell you, a draft can't truly be analyzed until a couple of years out, but the opinions on the Vikings' draft are as divergent as they can be. We'll have to check back in a couple of years to see who was right and who was wrong.

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