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Vikings Red Flagging Draft Prospects Due To. . .Twitter?

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

While one of the main things emphasized at the NFL Scouting Combine is the 40-yard dash, a story came out the other day that the Minnesota Vikings are just as interested in a 140-character dash.

General Manager Rick Spielman told the media in Indianapolis that the Vikings have been combing social media, specifically Twitter, to gain some insight into some of this year's draft prospects. More specifically, there are prospects that the team has "red flagged" or removed from their draft board because of some of the things they've tweeted, and even things they've re-tweeted."

There were guys I found on Twitter this year that I can't believe they would post and re-Tweet some of the stuff they were saying,'' Spielman said inside the Lucas Oil Stadium. "We wrote a report just on their Twitter accounts.

"I won't say the names. But out of the 60 that we did, there are eight guys that we have concerns about their Twitter feeds that we will address here.''

What was on those accounts?

"Immaturity: Why would you Tweet that? Some things specifically on there, 'Hey, I'm going out and partying with the guys tonight.' Or admitting that they just took a drug,'' Speilman said.

I'd be surprised if the Vikings were taking players off of their draft board simply because of what they've said in social media. More likely, these are guys that are mid-to-late round types that could have gone one way or another, and this was enough to tip the scale in that direction. I mean, seriously. . .this team isn't taking Teddy Bridgewater or Blake Bortles off their draft board because of social media concerns. (Not that there are any with either of those players. . .just an example.)

With a team that's had a bit of a rough time with players doing stupid things, it's a pretty prudent move by Rick Spielman and company to track these sorts of things, in my opinion. Yes, the prospects involved have freedom of speech and all of that. . .everyone does. They're not free, however, from the consequences of what they might put out there.