The Vikings have multiple picks in three of the last six rounds. Expect them to package some of those late picks to move up and get good values in the coming rounds.
After a quiet first day of the 2010 draft, look for the Vikings to get active today as they start making their own picks. Currently armed with nine picks, including two picks each in the second, fifth and seventh rounds, the Vikings will be active one way or another – whether it's standing pat and making their picks or packaging picks and targeting players they covet.
Since Brad Childress took the reigns of the team, trading up in the middle to late rounds is nothing new. In 2006, the Vikings moved up into the end of the second round in a trade with the then-champion Steelers to take Tarvaris Jackson
, giving up two third-round picks to get into the second round. They also flip-flopped picks with the Eagles to acquire Artis Hicks
and used the fourth-rounder obtained from the Eagles to draft Ray Edwards
In 2007, the Vikings traded back with Philadelphia and used the pick they got from the Eagles to take Sidney Rice
. They cut a deal with Tampa Bay to move up in the fourth round, sending a fourth- and sixth-rounder to the Bucs to take Brian Robison
In 2008, the Vikings gave up their first-round pick and two third-rounders to obtain Jared Allen
. With so few picks remaining, it would seem the Vikings wouldn't be in a position to make any more deals, but they did. They cut a deal with to move up in the second round to take Tyrell Johnson
and sent a fifth- and seventh-round pick to Green Bay to move up and take QB John David Booty
Last year, the Vikings pulled off a similar deal with the Redskins, giving up a fifth- and seventh-round pick to move up in the fifth round to take Jasper Brinkley
The Vikings have a history of making trades to acquire quarterbacks, doing so to get Jackson, Booty and even Brooks Bollinger and Kelly Holcomb
Perhaps the most surprising part of these trade scenarios was that the Vikings were never armed with additional picks on draft weekend. The only time they had what could be viewed as a tradable surplus was in 2008, when they shipped two third-rounders and a first-rounder to get Allen. With nine picks in the final six rounds, the Vikings have a lot of flexibility to move up or down if they choose. What they will do is up to speculation. What is certain is that the Vikings will be very active and working the phones – receiving and calling – over the next 48 hours.
Rick Spielman didn't seem to be too big a fan of the new format. With teams given 20 hours to reload, re-think and re-adjust their draft boards, it takes away from those teams (like the Vikings) that have done exhaustive homework. Spielman said he prefers the high-speed decision-making process, which he views as an advantage for the Vikings.
The first round seemed to be a draft based more on need than talent. After the first seven picks came off the board pretty much as expected, teams reached for a few players to fill needs. Oakland, always unpredictable on draft day, took MLB Rolando McClain with the eighth pick – most scouts had him rated in the middle of the round. The Chargers traded up 16 spots to take RB Ryan Mathews and the Jaguars had the "wow" head-scratcher of the day when they took DE Tyson Aluala – rated as a second-rounder by most scouts – as the first defensive end in the draft.
Teams in the division took big steps moving forward. The Lions added two immediate difference-makers in DT Ndamukong Suh and trading with the Vikings to get explosive RB Jahvid Best. The Packers got lucky to have Bryan Bulaga, a top-10 rated offensive tackle in most mock drafts, fall to No. 23. The Bears currently won't pick until the third round later tonight.
The Vikings may have played a role in Dallas moving up to draft wide receiver Dez White. Owner Jerry Jones passed on Randy Moss in 1998 because of perceived character issues, despite being told by scouts that he was the best player they had ever evaluated. He vowed not to make the same mistake 12 years later and took White, who was rated No. 1 on the Cowboys overall board.
Josh McDaniels learned a lot from Bill Belichick about drafting. Originally sitting at No. 11, the Broncos traded down twice to acquire more picks and then moved up to select QB Tim Tebow at No. 25. After trading away Jay Cutler and Brandon Marshall, in one night, the Broncos drafted two players – Tebow and WR Demaryius Thomas – to be their eventual replacements.
If the Vikings stay at No. 2 in the second round – far from guaranteed – there are several options in front of them. If nobody moves in from of them to take QB Jimmy Clausen, he will be available. Others include QB Colt McCoy, RBs Joe McKnight, Dexter McCluster and Toby Gerhart, WRs Golden Tate and Arrelious Benn, TEs Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski, OT Charles Brown, OGs Vladimir Ducasse and Jon Asamoah, DEs Everson Griffen and Carlos Dunlap, DTs Brian Price, Terrence Cody, Linval Joseph and Lamarr Houston, MLB Brandon Spikes, OLBs Sergio Kindle, Daryl Washington, Sean Lee and Ricky Sapp, CBs Chris Cook, Javier Arenas and Jerome Murphy and safeties Taylor Mays and Morgan Burnett. If the Vikings stay at No. 2, it would be hard to pass on either Kindle or Mays.