Vikings Draft 2021: Final seven-round mock draft
By Adam Carlson
Fifth Round (Pick No. 157)
Derrick Barnes – LB (Purdue)
Every NFL team should pick at least one linebacker during their draft. Whether looking for a starter, wanting to add depth, or looking for a special teams player, linebackers are a welcome addition to any locker room.
For this draft, Derrick Barnes is an interesting prospect for the team to look at in the fifth round. One look at him will bring back memories of the old-school thumping linebackers of days past with the power and work ethic to deliver powerful hits on a regular basis.
Unlike those linebackers of old, Barnes is more athletic than players of his frame typically are. A refreshing Pro Day saw him put up respectable numbers to go with his 6-foot-1 and 238-pound frame, making him a fun project for a team looking to add a solid-tackling defender.
However, Minnesota might not want to have him in a position where he needs to drop back into coverage. Plus, time in the film room to help identify play development would be a huge help. And that would be okay with the Vikings since he wouldn’t need to contribute immediately.