7 wide receivers the Vikings could select in the 2022 NFL Draft

(Photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) George Pickens
(Photo by Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) George Pickens /
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Minnesota Vikings
(Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images) Calvin Austin III /

Calvin Austin III (Memphis)


  • Height: 5-foot-9 | Weight: 162 pounds

2021 Stats:

  • 74 catches
  • 1,149 yards (15.5 YPR)
  • 8 touchdowns

If last year’s NFL Draft is any indication of what Kevin O’Connell wants to bring to Minnesota, the Vikings could be in play for a shifty playmaker later in the draft. The Rams used a second-round pick on an undersized Tutu Atwell despite having plenty of contributors at wide receiver with the idea that Atwell’s speed would be a game-changer in the offense.

The player in this class that best resembles Atwell would be Memphis’ Calvin Austin III, an undersized speedster that can pretty much do it all. Over the past two seasons, Austin caught 137 passes for 2,202 yards and 19 touchdowns. He tallied at least 1,000 receiving yards in each of those seasons before taking his talents to the NFL.

Although in a limited capacity, Calvin Austin III has shown the ability to be a rusher which will open his role in any offense. He had touchdown rushes of 83 and 69 yards during his four years at Memphis and averaged 21.1 yards per carry over eight career attempts.

So long as he can find manufactured touches in Minnesota, Austin could be the missing piece that gives Minnesota a different element. As good as the offense has been, the Vikings have lacked a truly dynamic player that can just get the ball and go.

It will be interesting to see where Austin winds up going on draft weekend. Mock drafts have had him land anywhere from early Day 2 to the top of Day 3. If he is available in the third round when the Vikings are on the clock, Kevin O’Connell might be too enticed to pass it up.