Fifth-Round Pick No. 2 (164th Overall)
Javon Baker - WR (UCF)
Javon Baker started his college career at Alabama but was not a consistent player in their offense so he transferred to UCF for his final two seasons. At UCF, Baker put up some impressive numbers and capped off his career with an incredible season as he dreams of an NFL opportunity.
In 2023, the 6-foot-2 pass catcher caught 52 passes for a career-high 1,139 yards and seven touchdowns, which was good for an average of 21.9 yards per catch. Over his four years of college, Baker averaged 17.5 yards per reception as he was a big play waiting to happen.
Minnesota has a lot of playmakers on the roster, but adding a player like Javon Baker near the end of the draft and hoping he sticks is always a risk worth taking. K.J. Osborn has been decent as the third receiver on the roster, but his contract is up after this coming season, and he really has not emerged as a must-keep kind of player. Finding his replacement in the draft for cheap is a smart move.
Baker has really good hands and body control, which allow him to make contested catches and stay strong through the ball, especially near the sideline. He can be an explosive player as the third or fourth receiver on the field when the offense needs a big gain.
He is currently trending up, and his value could very well end much higher than a sixth-round player but if he does survive to this pick, the Vikings would be smart to add him. He can be an NFL contributor as a rookie while he develops into a larger role later on.