As we all know, draft day is approaching. And the Vikings' primary draft guy, Rick Spielman, has been talking- a lot- about it. And as we all also know, nothing he says can be taken anywhere close to face value. In fact, many of the things he's said are outright contradictory. Basically, if I ever wanted to play poker against someone in the Vikings organization, it would certainly not be him.
That said, since there's obviously been lots of draft day talk around here, and many of us are participating in various forms of mocks on the matter, I thought it would be interesting to compile a basic list of quotes in timeline fashion from the man. This will probably get a bit frustrating to read at times, because there will undoubtedly be a quote directly underneath another quote, and the two will say opposite things. Just keep in mind, it's a very good thing no one here is going to have any clue what he's going to do; after all, it means it's that much less likely that any other GM out there knows, either.
So here goes. Straight from the horses' mouth... what is most likely a load of horse manure. Let's see if any of us can glean an actual prediction out of it all.
Feb. 3rd- "Yeah, again I think as you go into this draft -- and that's what makes the process so exciting, especially on draft day because so many things happen behind the scenes -- and there's no reason where potentially we can move out of #12 and move down a little bit later in a draft because we like maybe an offensive tackle in this draft, or we like a defensive lineman, or we like a corner or a safety coming out, and then swing back around to get that third round pick back, but also still get some very good players. What we'll do is, as we go through this process and we get everything finalized, we actually put together a, almost like a book on what other teams, what we project them, that they're going to do, what needs are they going to fill -- for example, if you're going to move down from the 12th pick, and let's say you still want to take a quarterback, for example; well, if there's four teams that already have established quarterbacks that you know aren't going to take a quarterback, you could potentially move down, pick up that pick, and still get your player. But also there are risks to that, too, because if someone's down further than that they could still make that jump ahead of you. So there's a lot of mind games going on during that draft day, but there's a lot of options, a lot of things that could potentially happen. But we're hoping, and our goal is to try to get that 3rd rd pick some way, shape or form."- Courtesy KFAN-AM.
Feb. 11th- "Joe Webb did (some positive things) toward the end of the season," Spielman told KFAN-AM. "You see some things that are pretty unique. So you're asking yourself if you do draft a quarterback, is Joe Webb your No. 2 quarterback going in or does he come in and compete? Will he continue to progress and utilize all the natural athletic talent that he has because he's a very interesting prospect, too. So we're going to have to get X amount of quarterbacks in here to compete. It's just a matter of which direction we go. And we won't know that until we've been through that total process so you can actually layout the game plan. It doesn't mean we're going to draft one with the 12th overall pick. This is a very deep class of rookie quarterbacks. There are some very good senior quarterbacks that are going to go in the second and third round, too." Courtesy KFAN-AM, via SportingNews feed.
Feb. 23rd-"Last year's draft was done because we had everybody back. It was done for ... I wouldn't say depth, it was done for the future. Some of those guys -- when you had as much depth as we had, you had the veteran roster we had -- those guys were going to be role players for you. ... They didn't have as many opportunities as some of the veterans we had in front of them. Those guys we are relying on next year to take that step, plus what's coming in in this year's draft class."-Courtesy Judd Zulgad, Star Tribune.
March 9th- "It's all in flux", regarding the next Vikings' #1 QB. (I personally figured this is a great quote to include, as it's about the only thing we can figure was the truth.) Courtesy Charley Walters, Pioneer Press.
April 5th- "Knowing where we're going to be at, there will be probably five positions that I know we'll look at with our 12th pick and then we'll sort that out. Like I said, there are a lot of other needs to fill at that 12th position if it's not a quarterback. I can tell you this: We're going to take the best player available when it comes to our pick. That I know."
"I still think you can't force quarterback. If you're not comfortable with it, you're just going to make a mistake." Both quotes courtesy Judd Zulgad, Minneapolis Star-Tribune.
April 15th- "Potentially if one of those receivers slides down to 12 and Sidney Rice doesn't return, there are things you can do to fill that need as well", regarding top-ranked receivers A.J. Green and Julio Jones. Courtesy Mike Florio, ProFootballTalk.com.
April 16th- "We've always taken the philosophy of trying to get the best available player. That's what happened when we took Adrian even though Chester Taylor had a great year. We did that with Percy when he slipped down to us at 21. We've had a lot of success doing that."
"The thing that's different this year from the past is that you had an idea what teams did in trades and what they did in the UFA market where they may have filled some of those needs. Going into this draft, no one has filled any needs on their roster yet. It's going to be a unique draft because I think there's going to be a lot of movement on teams moving up and down and teams are really going to focus on, if there's a player they really like, they're going to go after that player."
"We've been going pretty hard all this week and will finish up on Tuesday and try to finalize things. Our coaches are in right now giving all their opinions and weighing on what the scouts have said and getting the board set", regarding the current 'big draft board' process.- Three quotes courtesy of John Holler, VikingUpdate.com.
April 16th- "I've been following this ‘OrlandoVikesFan' guy on the Daily Norseman, and I think he's a genius. In fact, I intend to invite him to join myself and the rest of the triangle of authority in the war room come draft day." A dream I had last night.
Obviously these quotes are via a variety of search engines and my own typical sources for stories. I'm sure there are other great ones out there- if you know of any, include them in the comments and I'll edit to add them in. Small favor- if possible, include either a link or at least a source.