5 biggest Vikings 2020 draft needs at the midpoint of the season

(Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) Pat Elflein
(Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) Pat Elflein /

Left Guard

It has been said plenty of times this month in articles and tweets around the internet, but we will say it again here, Pat Elflein has become a huge liability on the Vikings; offensive line. If Kirk Cousins is getting pressured or sacked this season, there’s a very strong chance that Elflein is the culprit.

It’s clear to tell, as he just stands there and watches his quarterback get destroyed. If he does stay on his man, he can’t stop him with technique and strength, so he holds on and draws a costly yellow flag. It’s a wonder Minnesota hasn’t benched him yet for his poor play.

The Vikings may have the solution on their current roster to fix the Elflein problem. Dakota Dozier has filled in and held his own at times this year, though when he started in Week 4 against Chicago, it was a bit of a disaster.

There is also Brett Jones, who likely isn’t the answer, but a draft pick from last year could be. Rookie Dru Samia wowed in practice this summer and in the preseason with his massive size and impressive athletic ability. Minnesota put him at the bottom of the depth chart though and he has been unable to climb his way up to the point of appearing in meaningful games this year.

If Elflein’s woes continue, the Vikings will probably replace him with a veteran if they are making a playoff push. That would make Samia an unknown commodity as they head into the 2020 offseason.

That being said, if a top-shelf interior offensive lineman is sitting on the board when the Vikings are on the clock that beautiful Thursday night in late April, they should pull the trigger. This team is built to run the football and having a guy who can open up holes and protect his quarterback would be a huge score.