Spielman and the Vikings draft strategy.

I have listened and read many of the numerous interviews that Spielman has given over the last several months. I don't try and guess who he will pick from these interviews because I know that information will not be forthcoming.  But there is a certain draft strategy that is employed by the Vikes. A certain pattern they wish to follow.  I wanted to explore that after the jump.


Spielman has said all this off season that the Vikings will continue to take the Best Player Available.  This year in particular, when repeatedly asked about the QB position, he has said


"Look, if a MVP type prospect is available at #12, for any position,  we will take him".

He has also been quoted as saying that he thinks up to 22 D-Line position players will go in the first two rounds.  A very deep draft for D-Lineman.


THE PAST:  Spielman has employed a draft strategy in the past of taking BPA in the first round. Adrian Peterson, Jared Allen, and Percy Harvin have been the three selected with the #1 pick in his 4 years. A Spielman first round pick is a person expected to be an impact player. Any thoughts on the Vikings passing up an impact player for a position of need probably just isn't going to happen.


The second round Spielman selections are entirely different.  Here we find the Vikings moving up and down throughout the round to get targeted players.  These players are targeted for their skill or for the Vikings needs.

2007- Vikes move down to get Sidney Rice.

2008- Vikes move up to get Tyrell Johnson

2009- Vikes stay at #22 for Phil Loadholt

2010- Vikes move up to get Toby Gerhart


My conclusion from all of this is that Spielman will remain true to form.  He will not decide to trade down in the first simply to pick up a draft spot later. He will not choose a QB simply out of need. He will not pass on a great DT because the O-Line needs help.  What he will do is put together a great draft board.

One that says " If any of these 5 guys fall to #12 we will flat out take them. They are simply to great".

One that says  " If one of these QBs are available at #12 we will take them.  They are simply worth the pick". 

One that says "If none of those criteria are met we will trade down a few spots and reevaluate our position using the same criteria."   I don't believe the Vikes will trade out of the first into the second round. This just doesn't give the Vikes any wiggle room for selecting a QB. Small steps back I can understand.  A major move back will only occur if the QB they want is already gone or not very highly rated ( such as a Stanzi). Trading out of the first and moving back into the first later is not the Vikings style. It also is not a very efficient .  Just look at what Denver paid to get Tebow last year. I doubt the Vikings would do that.



I believe the second round will find the Vikings targeting a D-Line player.  Why?  Because the draft is very deep in D-Lineman and Spielman needs a Pat Williams replacement. Now, that doesn't mean that a great O-Lineman or great LB won't be available for the Vikes. And the Vikes might very well target such a stud. But Spielman has been steady in his comments that this is a deep D-Line draft.  Passing on one of those is hard to imagine.


Lately, there has been talk of Da'Quan Bowers falling to the #12 spot due to several factors.  The most important being that the 3-4 defensive teams don't think he can be a 3-4 kinda guy.   Julio Jones, many believe, is as good a player as AJ Green.  But he could fall to #12.  The Prince (Amukamarra), a great Defensive back, might be available.


Here is a compilation list of the top 51 players I stole from poster Pablo Escabar at mocking the draft.


Your job is to determine who the Vikes should get with their first two picks.  Two players, two players plus an extra pick?  One player?

It is an endless task.

Here are my choices.  If Available at #12 take Gabbert, Newton, Bowers, Quinn or Jones in that order.

If unavailable move back to #18, pick up a draft pick.  Hope for Locker and/or Ponder to pass through Miami and Jacksonville. If Locker or Ponder is unavailable take BPA of Jimmy Smith, Kerrigan, or Castonzo. If unavailable trade into early second round.  Use second round to pick solidify the QB, DT position by targeting your players.




Patrick Peterson (CB) - 6'1'' 222lb - LSU


Marcell Dareus (DT/DE) - 6'3'' 306lb - Alabama


Von Miller (OLB) - 6'2'' 240lb - Texas A&M


AJ Green (WR) - 6'4'' 200lb - Georgia


Nick Fairley (DT/DE) - 6'5'' 298lb - Auburn


Da'Quan Bowers (DE) - 6'4'' 280lb - Clemson


Robert Quinn (DE/OLB) - 6'5'' 265lb - UNC


Julio Jones (WR) - 6'4'' 210lb - Alabama


Prince Amukamara (CB) - 6'1'' 200lb - Nebraska


Blaine Gabbert (QB) - 6'5'' 240lb - Missouri


Tyron Smith - (OT) - 6'6'' 285lb - USC


Cameron Jordan (DE/DT) - 6'4'' 287lb - Cal


Mark Ingram (RB) - 5'10'' 215lb - Alabama


JJ Watt (DE/DT) - 6'6'' 287lb - Wisconsin


Aldon Smith (DE) - 6'4'' 258lb - Missouri


Cam Newton (QB) - 6'6'' 246lb - Auburn


Anthony Castonzo (OT) - 6'7'' 308lb - BC


Adrian Clayborn (DE) - 6'4'' 285lb - Iowa


Gabe Carimi (OT) - 6'7'' 315lb - Wisconsin


Ryan Kerrigan (DE/OLB) - 6'4'' 255lb - Purdue


Corey Liuget (DE/DT) - 6'3'' 300lb - Illinois


Cameron Heyward (DT/DE) - 6'6'' 287lb - Ohio St.


Justin Houston (OLB) - 6'3'' 254lb - Georgia


Nate Solder (OT) - 6'8'' 315lb - Colorado


Jake Locker (QB) - 6'3'' 226lb - Washington


Muhammed Wilkerson (DE/DT) - 6'5'' 301lb - Temple


Derek Sherrod (OT) - 6'6'' 312lb - Miss St.


Akeem Ayers (OLB) - 6'3'' 254lb - UCLA


Brandon Harris (CB) - 5'11'' 195lb - Miami


Danny Watkins (G) - 6'4'' 312lb - Baylor


Mike Pouncey (G) - 6'5'' 320lb - Florida


Jimmy Smith (CB) - 6'2'' 205lbs - Colorado


Phil Taylor (NT) - 6'4'' 336lb - Baylor


Stephen Paea (DT) - 6'1'' 295lb - Oregon State


Kyle Rudolph (TE) - 6'6'' 265lb - Notre Dame


Martez Wilson (LB) 6'4'' 250lb - Illinois


Jonathan Baldwin (WR) - 6'5'' 220lb - Pittsburgh


Mikel Leshoure (RB) - 6'0'' 230lb - Illinois


Ryan Mallet (QB) - 6'7'' 238lb - Arkansas


Leonard Hankerson (WR) - 6'2'' 205lb - Miami


Christian Ponder (QB) - 6'2'' 222lb - Florida State


Aaron Williams (CB) - 6'1'' 195lbs - Texas


Benjamin Ijalana (T/G) - 6'4'' 320lb - Willanova


Jabaal Sheard (DE/OLB) - 6'3'' 260lb - Pittsburgh


Ryan Williams (RB) - 5'10'' 210lb - Virginia Tech


Christian Ballard (DE/DT) - 6'4'' 288lb - Iowa


Rahim Moore (FS) - 6'1'' 195lbs - UCLA


Randall Cobb (WR/R) - 5'11'' 191lb - Kentucky


Orlando Franklin (T/G) - 6'7'' 315lb - Miami


Brooks Reed (DE/OLB) - 6'3'' 257lb - Arizona

This FanPost was created by a registered user of The Daily Norseman, and does not necessarily reflect the views of the staff of the site. However, since this is a community, that view is no less important.

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Daily Norseman

You must be a member of Daily Norseman to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Daily Norseman. You should read them.

Join Daily Norseman

You must be a member of Daily Norseman to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Daily Norseman. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.