With teams reporting for and starting training camp, it's time to think fantasy football draft. With our favorite team reporting to Mankato today and starting practice tomorrow, let's look at some players on the Vikings roster that might be worth a look-see come draft day, and what round you might be able to get them in.
Now, with a team coming off a 3-13 season, a 2nd year quarterback, and a stud running back coming off of a serious knee injury, there aren't a lot of prospects. But let's look at what we have, and a possible sleeper or two.
Adrian Peterson, RB: Unless you're playing in a league with nothing but Vikings fans, you can probably get AP in the third or even fourth round. If you're in a Vikings fan only league, he's gone in the first three picks. Why? Because we're drinking the purple kool aid, that's why. The more I read, the more I'm thinking that Peterson will be on the roster come week one--he's been given a green light to do all cuts at all speeds, and he's probably one of the three or four most motivated people on the planet. If you can get him in the third round, it might be the steal of the draft.
Toby Gerhart, RB: Peterson's status begs the question...where does that leave Gerhart? Well, if you can get Peterson, it would be really, really smart to have Gerhart on the roster. It's not that I think Peterson will get hurt again, but I do feel that he will be given a larger role in the offense as AP gets his football legs back under him. I wouldn't take him before the 9th or 10th round, but if you draft Peterson, I'd almost consider Gerhart a mandatory pick on your bench. He might be a nice flex option in a lot of weeks.
Percy Harvin, WR: Okay, a confession: When I play fantasy football, I want to have guys on my team that I like cheering for. Ergo, I always draft Harvin, and I always draft him too high. I don't care. I'll pull the trigger on Harvin in the 3rd or 4th round. I've done it every year since he's been in the league, and I've never been sorry. He gets points, he's fun to cheer for, and he's a Viking. Now, should you draft him that high? No. You can probably wait until the 5th or even 6th round and still get him, but that makes you a heartless, bottom line emotionless owner, like George Steinbrenner. Way to be the Yankees. Get Harvin in the third and don't look back. Put all this "I want to get traded" crap and put it to the side. I'm positive that the Vikings told Harvin 'shut up, play and play well, and we will reward you.' He's going to be motivated to have a good year...and he will.
Kyle Rudolph, TE: If there's a sleeper pick on the Vikings this year, I'm going with Rudolph. I thought he played well in his rookie season, and now as the presumptive #1 TE in a two TE offense, he's going to see a lot more balls thrown his way, and with a young QB, I think the chance that Rudolph puts up decent numbers is pretty good. Now, I've looked at a lot of mock drafts so far (I play in a 10 team league, so that is my reference) and rarely have I seen Rudolph drafted.
Jerome Simpson, WR: Yeah, he's going to miss the first three games due to his cameo appearance on Justified as one of Boyd Crowder's drug mules, but Simpson has the ability to be the bookend playmaker to Harvin. If guys like Danny Amendola and Laurent Robinson are late round picks, Simpson can be. Look, drafting Simpson would be kind of foolish, since he'll miss three games, but come week four he'll be a great waiver wire pickup.
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