"The Vikings targeted speed on their board and they definitely got it with wide receiver Troy Williamson, who wowed Minnesota enough that the Vikings passed on Mike Williams. Defensive end Erasmus James gives them much-needed help up front, guard-tackle Marcus Johnson will solidify the offensive line and running back Ciatrick Fason has the potential to be a terrific steal in the fourth round. Dustin Fox is a good cornerback and defensive tackle C.J. Mosley is a motivated overachiever.”
That was Mel Kiper's assessment of the Minnesota Vikings' 2005 Draft the day after said draft had taken place. Kiper and his hair gave the Vikings a B+ "grade" for their draft.
As any Viking fan knows, Minnesota's 2005 draft class is on the short list of worst drafts in NFL history. To review. . .
Troy Williamson - Everything that can be said about Williamson has already been said. Although it could probably be said with fewer expletives. Or more expletives, depending on what makes you happier.
Erasmus James - When he was on the field, he wasn't awful or anything. It's just that he could never get on the field. He was eventually traded for a seventh-round pick. . .the Vikings sent that pick back to the Redskins in the trade to move up in the fifth round this year and select South Carolina LB Jasper Brinkley.
Marcus Johnson - Played a couple of positions on the offensive line, and was relatively horrible at all of them, save one surprising performance at left tackle in the 2008 season opener against Green Bay. Actually lasted longer on the roster than any other member of this class. . .which, considering that this draft saw two first-round picks for the Vikings, is embarrassing and sad.
Dustin Fox - Who? Yeah, that sums it up.
Ciatrick Fason - Was briefly used as a goal-line back. . .which was, apparently, the ideal role for him, as his 3.2 ypc average in two years indicates that was really all the further he could get.
C.J. Mosley - Probably the best performer from the Vikings' 2005 draft class. Showed some promise as a backup DT as a rookie, and was eventually traded to the New York Jets as part of the trade that brought Brooks Bollinger to Minnesota.
Adrian Ward - Didn't even make the roster.
Grading a draft less than 24 hours after it occurs is a ludicrous practice, and one that I haven't engaged in as long as I've been running this site. After I get home from work this afternoon, I'll have my impressions on the Vikings' 2009 draft and how I feel the Vikings fared, but we don't know anything about how successful this draft is for the Vikings at this point in time.
The same thing goes for pretty much everyone other team, too. Sure, the Raiders were roundly ripped for selecting Darrius Heyward-Bey at #7. . .but what if he turns out to be a better WR than Michael Crabtree, the "consensus" best wide receiver in this year's draft? What if Matthew Stafford turns out to be more like Tim Couch than Peyton Manning in terms of QBs drafted #1 overall? Heck, what if. . .God forbid. . .Percy Harvin decides his love for pot is greater than his love for football and gets repeatedly nailed by the league's substance abuse policy?
We all have our impressions of how each team did this weekend at Radio City Music Hall. But the fact of the matter is that nobody. . .not you, not me, not Mike Mayock, not Mel Kiper. . .has any idea how any team in this year's draft did at this moment in time. I'm not saying that the draft "grades" aren't fun to read and provide a nice little distraction, but it's pretty much impossible to put any real stock into them at this point in time.
With that said, you can feel free to discuss the draft grades from the "experts," as well as your own personal thoughts and impressions of this year's draft here. I'll have my impressions of Minnesota's draft and the draft in general later this afternoon. Thanks to everyone that visited the site this weekend to make it a success, and if you're here for the first time, go on and sign up for an account so you can join the party!