David Ojabo – DE (Michigan)
The Vikings’ defense needs a lot of help. They thought they got that help in free agency last season when they spent money on guys like Dalvin Tomlinson, Patrick Peterson, Xavier Woods, Bashaud Breeland, and Mackensie Alexander. While those names all looked great on paper, together they couldn’t improve a defense that was god awful in 2020.
Minnesota did lose their premier pass rusher in Danielle Hunter, and they also brought back Everson Griffen, who was having a solid season until he left to deal with some personal matters. The loss of those players showed that the Vikings have to get deeper, and richer at the defensive end position.
D.J. Wonnum has had some nice moments this season, but he has proven he can’t be counted on week in and week out. This team needs to find an elite young pass rusher who can pair with Hunter, and then take over for him when and if he leaves.
David Ojabo was the best on the board at pick No. 12 and he would be a solid get for Minnesota. He’s 6-foot-5, 250 pounds, and can fly off the football.
He exploded in 2021, with 11 sacks and 12 tackles for a loss. He can play standing up, or with his hand in the dirt, and hopefully whoever is in charge of the Vikings defense in 2022 find creative ways to take advantage of his talent.
His detractors may point out his just one year of production, but he only played one game as a sophomore, and it makes sense to enter the draft now, instead of risking injury.
Ojabo does need some refining, but the talent is there to be a consistent pass rusher whose pressures will make things easier on the back end of Minnesota’s defense.