Vikings 7-Round 2023 NFL Mock Draft: Minnesota lands top QB after blockbuster trade

Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud
Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud / Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports
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Minnesota Vikings
Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud / Ben Jackson/GettyImages

First Round (Pick No. 5)

C.J. Stroud - QB (Ohio State)

After the first four selections in this year's NFL Draft, former Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud is still on the board. It's a bit of a surprise since, just a few weeks ago, many believed the Carolina Panthers could have made Stroud the No. 1 overall pick in the draft.

But with the talented passing prospect still on the board, the decision isn't difficult for the Vikings to make as they use their first-round selection on a quarterback for the first time since 2014.

Many believe Stroud is ready to be a starter in NFL as a rookie. But with Kirk Cousins still on the roster, Minnesota can sit the former Ohio State quarterback for a season just to make sure he is as ready as he possibly can be when he takes over as the team's starter in 2024.

The Vikings gave up a lot to trade up into the top five and have a chance at selecting Stroud. But if the young passer emerges as one of the next top signal-callers in the NFL during the next few years, no one is going to care what draft picks Minnesota had to give up to acquire him.