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2016 NFL Draft: Vikings Keying In On WR Position?

Vikings GM Rick Spielman isn't usually one to show his hand, but it appears he's focusing on wide receivers in the early rounds

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Although the Minnesota Vikings addressed a fair amount of needs in the early days of free agency, wide receiver is a position they need help at and haven't addressed so far. As a matter of fact, they released one of their starters from last year as Mike Wallace signed with the Baltimore Ravens.

We all remember that, right?

However Wallace parted ways with the Vikings, the point still stands that Minnesota needs help at the position, and barring a late free agency signing, will probably look to address the position in the upcoming draft. And when you peruse the list of remaining free agents at that position, you'll understand why.

So it really shouldn't come as a surprise that GM Rick Spielman and head coach Mike Zimmer have been attending pro days at places like Ol' Miss, TCU, and Ohio State to take a look at three of the top receivers in Laquon Treadwell, Josh Doctson, and Michael Thomas.

I have no way of knowing what Rick Spielman is actually thinking, heh heh, so whether or not this is just a smokescreen to throw off other teams remains to be seen. One of the reasons we do the Rickspeak parody, and why it seems to be so popular, is because of Spielman's subterfuge this time of year. He's very good at holding his cards close to his chest and not revealing what his true intentions are, while still managing to hold a 30 minute press conference.

But then again, when the Vikings were picking 11th last year, it seemed that CB was identified as a need early on, and never strayed far from that consensus. No one really believed that Minnesota was telegraphing their pick, but mock drafts attached Trae Waynes to the Vikings fairly early in the process, and really didn't waiver all that much.

And of course, in the end, the Vikings used their 11th pick on Waynes.

I'm not saying the Vikings are going to draft a wide receiver at 23, although Spielman has reportedly said the Vikings 'desperately' need one. They could go in a number of different directions, and wide receiver is just one of them. When you're drafting 23rd, there are so many different directions the first round could go, evaluating as many players as possible isn't just a good idea, it's basic common sense. Also, those aren't the only three Pro Days the Vikings have attended; I believe there has been a team representative at all pro days so far. And they're looking at a number of players at all of those pro days, not just wide receiver.

Still, with the Vikings hierarchy personally attending the pro days of Doctson, Treadwell, and Thomas, there's a lot of smoke to the 'Vikings are going to pick a WR in the first round' theory this year. Whether that turns into a fire or not remains to be seen.