NFL.com analyst/draft expert Mike Mayock has released his first list of his top five players at every position going into the 2013 NFL Draft. Over the years, Mayock's opinions have been a bit different from the consensus, and this year is no exception. . .particularly at one of the bigger positions of need for the Vikings.
The biggest surprise, in my opinion, is at the defensive tackle position. Utah defensive tackle Star Lotulelei has been a consensus Top 5 selection in the draft since the season ended, but Mayock actually has Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd as his top-rated defensive tackle. Floyd is mocked to the Vikings three time in our most recent update to the Mock Draft Database, and if Mayock thinks he's the best defensive tackle available this year, getting him at #23 would be a huge steal.
There's a slightly milder surprise in the wide receiver rankings. Two players that have been mocked to the Vikings at that position, Tennessee's Justin Hunter and Clemson's DeAndre Hopkins, aren't in Mayock's Top 5. He has Tennessee's Cordarrelle Patterson and California's Keenan Allen in the top two spots, followed by Terrance Williams of Baylor, Tavon Austin of West Virginia, and Louisiana Tech's Quinton Patton.
Here are Mayock's full rankings at this point. Obviously these are subject to change with the Combine and individual workouts coming soon.
1. Cordarrelle Patterson, Tennessee
2. Keenan Allen, Cal
3. Terrance Williams, Baylor
4. Tavon Austin, West Virginia
5. Quinton Patton, Louisiana Tech