5 defensive prospects for Vikings to watch at the 2023 East-West Shrine Bowl

(Photo by Doug Engle/USA TODAY NETWORK) Brenton Cox Jr.
(Photo by Doug Engle/USA TODAY NETWORK) Brenton Cox Jr. /
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Minnesota VIkings
(Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images) Lance Boykin /

Lance Boykin – CB (Coastal Carolina)

The Vikings’ secondary was disastrous in 2022. Ed Donatell had his corners play about 15 yards off the ball, and even the most mediocre quarterbacks found it quite easy to rack up yards through the air on this unit.

Minnesota needs to bring in a corner, likely in free agency and in the draft. They could certainly address this with their first pick at selection No. 24. But if they wait, a guy who has some upside that they could get later down the road is Lance Boykin from Coastal Carolina, and he just happens to be playing in the East-West Shrine Bowl.

The one thing that really sticks out about Boykin is his size. He’s 6-foot-3 and 202 pounds, which allows him to physically match up with pretty much any receiver he’s lined up against. He also uses his hands well in coverage, rarely drawing any flags.

He is a more than willing tackler racking up over 136 in his college career. Boykin also has some ball skills with seven career interceptions.

The biggest knock on Boykin is his overall speed. With his size, he is by no means a burner and may have trouble catching up to wideout who gets behind him. Overall, he’s a pretty solid prospect and potentially a guy who could end up being a gem found on Day 3 of the NFL Draft.