Rick Spielman explains why he dealt away a 1st round draft pick


Trading away a first round draft pick is always a hard decision, but Minnesota Vikings general manager may have found a bargain in quarterback Sam Bradford.

First round draft picks are a huge deal in today’s NFL. Those are tickets to get one of the top players in college football to join your perspective squad. That is why the decision to trade away the Minnesota Vikings top pick in 2017 was a very difficult one for general manager Rick Spielman.

Many fans had the same experience. They woke up to discover that the Minnesota Vikings had traded a first round draft pick and a conditional 4th round pick to the Philadelphia Eagles to Sam Bradford.

The initial response was not good on social media. While many did not seem to mind that Bradford was joining the Vikings to take over for the injured Teddy Bridgewater, it was the inclusion of a first round pick that sent people on Facebook and Twitter into a tizzy.

In the past, the team has found a lot of success in first round draft picks. Guys like Xavier Rhodes, Sharrif Floyd, Teddy Bridgewater, Harrison Smith, Adrian Peterson, and many other guys have helped to bring this young roster to the forefront.

However, it is that kind of success with draft picks in the past that allows Rick Spielman to take the 2017 first round draft pick. With many young guys surrounding veterans like Adrian Peterson, Terence Newman, and Captain Munnerlyn, the Vikings know they are a competitive team this year, and wanted to fill a big hole, even if it meant making a big move.

But that move wasn’t going to be too big. Teams knew the Vikings were going to be wanting a good quarterback to lead the team and started making some insane offers that would have meant trading away a top pick as well as a top player according to Sports Illustrated’s Monday Morning Quarterback.

"“I made a bunch of calls. I am not gonna mention teams. But there was blood in the water and teams knew it. The price was too high. I didn’t want to mortgage our future. Some teams asked for a first-round pick and a core young player. I can understand the pick. But we worked too hard over the past three years to put all that time and energy into drafting and developing a solid core of this team. I was taken aback who they were asking for. Players who’d been in the Pro Bowl.”"

The Minnesota Vikings won’t have their first round draft pick in 2017. But they do have Sam Bradford, Adrian Peterson, a dynamic group of young wide receivers, and one of the toughest defenses in the NFL.

And with the extra picks that the team has during the 2017 draft, the Vikings have plenty of ammunition to move around in the draft if they like, maybe even moving back into the first round of the draft.

"“We have a good football team, a young football team. Parting with the one, I knew I still had eight picks next year, including two threes and two fours. What really was significant for us was the second year of the contract with Sam. No one knows how long it’s going to take Teddy to recover. I had one other thing going with another team on Friday, but we liked Sam a lot.”"

For more on Peter King’s thoughts on the Sam Bradford trade, check out this great video:

Next: Vikings game-by-game 2016 season preview

Giving up a first round draft pick is a bit of a gamble, but this team is so talented that they want to win now and the Minnesota Vikings general manager is willing to invest that pick in this year’s roster.

If Sam Bradford can help bring this team to the next level during the 2016 season, Spielman could look like a genius for this gutsy trade. However, if Bradford fails to make this team better, the general manager will be open to tons of criticism from the fan base and media.