With the NFL draft coming quickly, the Minnesota Vikings have plenty of holes that need to be filled before the team kicks off Training Camp in August.
The Vikings will be without a first round draft pick because they traded their pick for quarterback Sam Bradford from the Eagles. Vikings general manager Rick Spielman and company will have to wait until Friday afternoon to make their first selection with the 48th pick.
Who the Vikings are looking at:
JOE MIXON- Running Back, Oklahoma
There’s been a lot of speculation over who the Vikings will select in their first pick. Despite his off-field issues, rumors have spread that the Vikings remain interested in Joe Mixon.
Even though Nixon is believed to be one of the best running backs in this draft class, he is likely to fall in the second round. Mixon pleaded guilty in 2014, to assaulting a woman in a store, leaving her unconscious. As a result, a majority of teams have pulled Mixon completely off their draft board.
Ultimately, the decision will come down to the Wilfs, owners of the Vikings. Mixon could replace Adrian Peterson and give the Vikings a modern-day running back.
ELIJAH LEE- Linebacker, Kansas State
Defensively, look for the Vikings to replace linebacker Chad Greenway with a draft pick in this draft. Elijah Lee has been linked to Minnesota. Lee could be selected in one of the later rounds.
Replacing Greenway is a hard task not only for on-field play, but in the locker room. Lee could step in and give the Vikings some depth as linebacker.
DAN FEENEY- Offensive Lineman, Indiana
Although the Vikings signed a couple free agents to strengthen the offensive line, don’t be surprised if they add some more depth through the draft.
Names you could hear called from the 48 slot: Dan Feeney (Indiana) could step in and start at right guard, which would keep Joe Berger at center. Four-year starter and two-time team captain for the Hoosiers, Feeney, could be an instant starter for the Vikings.
MALIK McDOWELL- Defensive Tackle, Michigan State
With uncertainty on the future of defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd, the Vikings could seek to replace him. They signed Datone Jones from the Packers, who will convert to defensive tackle.
Malik McDowell keeps popping up in conversations with the Vikings. If he does reach pick 48, the Vikings will take a long hard look at him. He has some effort concerns, but if there was one guy that could make anyone give effort it is Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer.
Other needs the Vikings will address will be a deep threat wide receiver, safety, quarterback and defensive end.
The draft is always an exciting time, not only for the teams and players, but the fans as well.
The week will only continue to get crazier as it goes on. Already fans have seen many new stories come out on players with issues off the field.
Do not be surprised to see the Vikings move around a lot in the draft, even without a first round pick.
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman is usually very active in the draft. With the scouting done and draft boards complete, it’s about time for the madness to begin.
The Vikings draft picks:
Round 2, No. 48
Round 3, No. 79
Round 3, No. 86 (from Miami)
Round 4, No. 120
Round 4, No. 128 (from Miami)
Round 5, No. 160
Round 6, No. 199
Round 7, No. 232