Apr 26, 2012; Eden Prairie, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings general manager Rick Spielman addresses the media as he introduces the 2013 1st round draft picks at a press conference at Winter Park. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Rick Spielman Ready to Move Around Again on Draft Night


If the Vikings stay at pick No. 8, Rick Spielman has a “hunch” about who the team might take. But of course he’s not telling.

“No one knows who we’re going to take right now,” Spielman said at a press conference today at Winter Park. Spielman even mentioned that the media has yet to mock certain players to the team they’re considering.

Of course, there’s a good chance the team won’t stay at No. 8. Spielman has stated that he loves the trade aspect of the NFL Draft, and he plans to explore plenty of possible deals in the next couple of days.

“I’d love to be active on draft day,” Spielman said. He mentioned that he got three calls yesterday and two texts today about moving about throughout the draft.

Spielman has been very active early in the draft as Vikings general manager, trading three times in the first round the past two years, and five times the last four years in rounds one through three.

Spielman and the Vikings staff are now preparing for every possible scenario that could occur when the draft opens up on Thursday. Spielman said at the press conference that team officials met for four hours earlier today going through draft-day scenarios.

One of those scenarios could involve the Vikings picking defensive tackle Aaron Donald out of Pittsburgh. Peter King of the MMQB has been linking Donald and the Vikings this week, first saying the Vikings were looking for a “front seven player” like him in his Monday column and then having the team pick him in his mock draft.

It’s easy to see why head coach Mike Zimmer could want a guy like Donald, a pass rushing defensive tackle who profiles very similarly to an All-Pro Zimmer coached in Cincinnati, Geno Atkins. Spielman mentioned Zimmer “would draw up a scheme” for players the team is considering, and Donald could be just the type of tackle Zimmer is looking for.

But where does that leave Sharrif Floyd, the a defensive tackle the Vikings took in the first round last year?

“Floyd is going to be a very good football player,” Spielman said. But then he added “you can never have enough defensive lineman.”

It’s possible that Donald and Floyd could team as inside pass rushers in the Vikings nickel package if the team were to take Donald, as free agent addition Linval Joseph is mainly known as a run-stuffer. If the team wants Joseph out in the nickel package too though, Donald had some experience as a nickel denfensive end in college.

Of course, Rick Spielman is tight-lipped as to whether that could actually be in the team’s plans. But we’ll find out for sure Thursday night.

Tags: Aaron Donald Rick Spielman Sharrif Floyd Vikings

  • MikeH123

    Because Floyd is a big fat bust (pun intended), Vikings need to use another first rounder on DT. Because Ponder was a bust, they must use a second or third round pick on another QB but he will also likely be a bust since few starting QBs are secured much outside the first round. And because Patterson can’t play X receiver, they should get a deep threat WR, but they can’t get one until late because they badly need LBs and even defensive backs. Because the Vikings still won’t have much offense around AD, I can see now why there is all this talk about trading him.

  • Ken Tomlin

    Donald is talented, but with needs at LB, CB and S on defense, it seems to be saying that they wasted a pick last year on Floyd. IMO they trade down to the 12-16 range and take 1 of 3 players: Mosley, Gilbert, or Dix/Pryor. Try to then trade back into bottom of 1st for Carr/Mettenberger/Garoppolo or Shazier/Fuller/Ward, then target QB in 3rd.