Mel Kiper Jr. gives unusual grade for Vikings picks in 2024 NFL Draft

ESPN draft personality Mel Kiper Jr.
ESPN draft personality Mel Kiper Jr. / Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Less than 24 hours ago, the 2024 NFL Draft concluded, but there have already been plenty of opinions shared about the what the Minnesota Vikings and the other 31 teams did with their selections during the last few days.

A number of notable outlets have already even given out their grades for what each team did during this year's NFL Draft. When it comes to the Vikings, some were really impressed with the group of players they wound up drafting, while others didn't quite understand what they decided to do with their picks.

ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. has been covering the NFL Draft for multiple decades, and he is among those who have already released their draft grades to the public. Kiper certainly didn't hold back with his thoughts about what Minnesota did with their draft picks this year.

Mel Kiper Jr. unimpressed with Minnesota Vikings decisions in 2024 NFL Draft

During Day 1 of the 2024 draft, the Vikings made two trades in the first round to move up and select quarterback J.J. McCarthy and pass rusher Dallas Turner.

While Turner and McCarthy were both highly rated by Kiper heading into this year's NFL Draft, the ESPN analyst wrote the following about how he didn't like how much Minnesota gave up in their trades to land each prospect.

"My qualm about GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah's class has more to do with mortgaging the future of this Minnesota roster. He made the move in March to get an extra first-rounder at No. 23, which cost him a second-round pick next year. And to trade up from No. 23 to No. 17, he had to give the Jaguars his 2025 third- and fourth-rounders.

That means the Vikings have just three selections next year: one in Round 1 and two in Round 5. With a rookie quarterback under center, are they really in position to go all-in right now?"

Overall, Kiper gave the Vikings a C+ grade for what they did with their draft picks this year. He believes Minnesota's 2024 draft class is "extremely top heavy," and "Adofo-Mensah's moves that upended the team's 2025 draft" were factored in when coming up with a grade for the Vikings.

To be fair to Kiper, dishing out grades for 32 teams immediately after the NFL Draft is extremely difficult. But it doesn't seem like he's very familiar with Minnesota's plans for the future.

Sure, the Vikings currently only have three picks in the 2025 draft (one first-round selection and two in the fifth round), but they are also expected to get at least one 2025 third-round compensatory pick for the departures of Kirk Cousins and Danielle Hunter in free agency earlier this year.

Minnesota could potentially also be in a good position in 2025 to trade back in the first round and acquire additional selections.

Combine all of this with the more than $100 million in cap space the Vikings are currently projected to have next year, and Adofo-Mensah hasn't exactly mortgaged the future of the team's roster like Kiper said in his explanation for the draft grade he gave Minnesota.

More Vikings News and Analysis