Minnesota Vikings: Active free agency opens draft options

Feb 24, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Minnesota Vikings general manager Rick Spielman speaks to the media during the 2016 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 24, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Minnesota Vikings general manager Rick Spielman speaks to the media during the 2016 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit

The Minnesota Vikings were very active in free agency, opening the team’s options for the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft as well as later round picks.

Day one of the 2016 NFL Draft is rapidly approaching and speculation as to who the Minnesota Vikings will select on April 28, 2016 with their first round selection is in full swing.

Related Story: 5 WR options for the Vikings in the 2016 NFL Draft

Depending on who you ask, the Vikings biggest needs are all over the board. Whether people want a wide receiver, safety, linebacker, offensive lineman, or other position, they can now open things up and take the best player available when they are on the clock instead of reaching for a prospect like the team had to in the past.

Thanks to an interview of Minnesota Vikings general manager Rick Spielman on NFLHQ, we now know that the team wanted to focus on helping out the struggling offensive line in free agency so they wouldn’t have to lock themselves into a selection there at the draft.

More from The Viking Age

"“We were pretty active for us in free agency this year,” Spielman said in the video hosted on Vikings.com. “I know our biggest goal was to address the offensive line, and we went out and signed Andre Smith and Alex Boone and [re-signed]Mike Harris, who started for us last year.”"

But offensive line wasn’t the only spot that Minnesota improved. They picked up a couple linebackers and a veteran safety as well. With all these signings, the crystal ball for who the Vikings could be targeting with the #23 overall selection became very cloudy.

"“We signed some guys on defense as well, so by us being able to do what we did in free agency, it’s going to leave No. 23 wide open to us,” Spielman said. “We’re not locked into anything. It will be truly following your board and taking the best player available. That also gives you the opportunity, if there’s something unique, you may move up, but if there’s enough depth, which I think there is enough depth in this draft, that you could move back and accumulate more picks.”"

Next: Five potential late-round wide receiver options

No matter what direction the Minnesota Vikings decide to go with their first round pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, the team will continue to stockpile talent and build for the future of the franchise. At a time when the Vikings are continuing to improve every year under head coach Mike Zimmer, it’s hard not to get excited about what this team can do during the 2016 NFL season and beyond.