Heading into draft season, one of the Vikings most under-rated needs is at defensive tackle.
Sharrif Floyd has a long list of injuries, Shamar Stephen has proved to be an inconsistent backup to this point, and Tom Johnson enters the final year of his contract, while also turning 33-years-old in August.
Despite the fifth-year option of his rookie contract already exercised, and coming off knee surgery, Floyd’s status is still unknown for 2017. His cap hit is expected to be in the neighborhood of $6.5 million.
With all of those surrounding questions, the position will be surrounded with many eyes of the Vikings brass.
The popular names in Mobile this week are Iowa’s Jaleel Johnson and Auburn’s Montravius Adams, both who are expected to be top-40 picks.
There is another name though that checks all the boxes of traits that the team looks for when scouting defensive tackles.
UNC-Charlotte’s Larry Ogunjobi is the definition of a sleeper. Listed at 6’2″, 295, he’s right in the wheelhouse of Mike Zimmer’s type of defensive tackles. Zimmer prefers his three-techniques to be smaller, and faster, with the ability to penetrate. This is evident with Tom Johnson and Sharrif Floyd.
According to Pro Football Focus, Ogunjobi posted a 13.8% run-stop percentage, which is third-best among FBS interior defensive lineman. The former Charlotte 49er will be a name to keep an eye on this week.
- NFL Comparison: Sheldon Richardson
- Projected Draft Range: Fourth-Round