Could the Vikings use their first pick on a defensive end this year?

(Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images) K'Lavon Chaisson
(Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images) K'Lavon Chaisson /

With multiple needs to fill during the 2020 NFL Draft, a defensive end could be an option for the Minnesota Vikings when it comes time for their first selection on Thursday.

For the first time in a few years, the Minnesota Vikings have a bunch of needs to fill on the defensive side of the ball during the upcoming NFL Draft.

The Vikings have had the luxury of keeping the majority of their starting defense together for the last few seasons. But with the departures of Everson Griffen, Linval Joseph, Mackensie Alexander, Trae Waynes, and Xavier Rhodes, Minnesota has some pretty big holes to fill on defense during this year’s draft.

During the first round of the draft on Thursday, the Vikings will likely have a variety of options to choose from. Is there a chance that one of their two picks in the first round could be spent a top defensive end prospect?

The guys over at Bleeding Purple recently went over this very topic with The Athletic’s Chad Graff and a new pass rusher in the first round doesn’t appear to be very probable for Minnesota.

When asked about the possibility of the Vikings using one of their first two draft picks on a defensive end this year, Graff said he would be, “surprised,” if this happened since it’s not among the team’s top needs this year.

He added that yes, there is still a chance of this happening, but Minnesota also feels pretty comfortable with Ifeadi Odenigbo as one of their two starting defensive ends heading into training camp this summer.

In order for this scenario to play out, one of the top pass rushers would likely have to fall far down the board and this year’s draft really just isn’t full of premier prospects who can rush the passer. Chase Young is expected to be gone after the first five selections and K’Lavon Chaisson is really the only other defensive end who could be worth the Vikings using a first-round pick on.

If Chaisson is still on the board at pick No. 22, then maybe Minnesota grabs him. But he’s regarded by most as a top 15 prospect, so him falling into the bottom third of the first round on Thursday isn’t something that many see actually happening.

Vikings Draft 2020: Realistic three-round mock draft. light. Trending

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