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 Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) PJ Mustipher /

PJ Mustipher – DT (Penn State)

Clearly, defensive tackle is an issue for the Vikings, as it is unclear at this point who will line up next to Harrison Phillips next year.

It’s also unclear whether Minnesota will stay with a 3-4 front or go back to the 4-3. Whatever they do, the line needs more depth, and adding another big man is a high priority.

Mustipher is an extremely powerful man. He excels at using his large lower half to anchor and then drive through blockers, using his big mitts to ward off linemen.

He had a solid career as a member of the Nittany Lions, with 144 total tackles and 10.5 tackles for a loss. It would be nice to see those sack numbers higher than three, but that’s not really his game.

Mustipher’s biggest concerns are his leverage issues. He sometimes pops up and out of his stance, giving the advantage to the man who is blocking him, which is likely the reason why his sack totals were just about nil in college. He also lost the majority of his junior season with a knee injury, and a big man with knee issues is always a concern.

As of right now, Mustipher is being projected as a late day-three prospect who could potentially go undrafted. He’s definitely worth a closer look this week to see if he’s one of the first calls Kwesi Adofo-Mensah makes if he is indeed available after the draft concludes.