As of now, there are many different ways that this draft could go. We could end up taking Blackmon, Kalil, Claiborne, etc, but there’s only one smart way to draft in the first round for this team. We need to take a LT. The reasoning for this is very simple-there simply aren’t enough decent LTs in free agency. The LTs in FA tend to be Charlie Johnson caliber, which is not what this team needs. You can find great receivers, corners, safeties, sometimes even quarterbacks, but finding a good LT in FA is very rare.
Now, taking a LT in the first round comes down to 4 prospects to watch-
1. Matt Kalil(USC)
Considered the best tackle prospect since Jake Long. He is often compared to Joe Thomas which is a great sign. He is a big LT who is also very athletic, the only problem is that he may be taken 2nd overall by the Rams.
2. Riley Reiff(Iowa)
These Big-10 Tackles are nasty, especially Riley Reiff. He was recently listed above Matt Kalil on a list done by Mike Mayock, who is a very well respected draft wiz. Reiff is expected to be taken between picks 5-10, meaning if Kalil is taken, we should trade down(maybe to spot 6 where the Redskins are, and are believed to want to trade up to pick up Robert Griffin III).
3. Jonathan Martin(Stanford)
A good prospect with a lot of upside, but not as good a prospect as the first two. Martin is very athletic, although, he unfortunately gets burned by speedy rushers…sound familiar? Considered to be drafted between picks 10-20, so I would consider him to be an option if Kalil and Reiff are already gone whenever the Vikings end up picking.
4. Mike Adams(Ohio State)
A fast rising prospect, he has long arms and is somewhat athletic, although I would consider him a last resort for the Vikes. He is considered to be drafted between picks 15-25.
If we miss out on drafting a LT in the first round this year, expect us to end up in the same situation as last year with the O-Line-Inconsistent and frustrating to watch.
Thanks for reading and I hope you are all looking forward to the draft. Leave a comment saying what you think and you can follow me on twitter @jackmack28.