7 best moves of the Minnesota Vikings’ 2019 offseason

(Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) Adam Thielen
(Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) Adam Thielen /
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(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) Irv Smith Jr.
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) Irv Smith Jr. /

5. Drafting Irv Smith Jr.

For the past few years, the Vikings have been trying to add a young tight end in the draft that they could pair with veteran Kyle Rudolph. The problem was that Minnesota would wait until the final few rounds to draft these tight ends and none of them have really been able to emerge as another weapon in the team’s offense.

At this year’s NFL Draft, however, the Vikings went ahead and selected former Alabama tight end Irv Smith Jr. in the second round. It was the earliest Minnesota has drafted a tight end since they took Rudolph with their second-round pick in 2011.

Of all five tight ends the Vikings have drafted since 2015, Smith seems to have the best chance at making an immediate impact as a rookie.

At Alabama, the young tight end displayed impressive speed and an ability to gain a bunch of yards after the catch. Something Minnesota has been missing from the position group for quite some time.

No matter if Rudolph is on the Vikings’ roster or not in 2019, Smith has the potential to quickly become one of Kirk Cousins’ favorite targets.