After 10 players in to our top 30 Vikings for 2016, and Eric and I have yet to have even one common player in our first ten selections of out top 30 players for 2016, at least in the range we have them slotted. Oh, in case you missed the first two installments, here you go:
30-26, with how this came about with Vikings Territory, and our explanation as how we came up with our lists: Right here
25-21: Right here
We'll round out our top 15 today, with players 20-16. Our respective lists:
|20||Laquon Treadwell, WR||Mackensie Alexander, CB|
|19||Terence Newman, CB||Trae Waynes, CB|
|18||Jerick McKinnon, RB||Shariff Floyd, DT|
|17||Brian Robison, DE||Brian Robison, DE|
|16||Tom Johnson, DT||Danielle Hunter, DE|
Eric: Laquon Treadwell, WR. I'll admit it: Treadwell was my second favorite wide receiver in the draft behind Josh Doctson. But I'll also admit that I wanted Johnny Manziel just as much as I wanted Teddy Bridgewater, so what do I know? Treadwell's "limitations" have been well-documented but I think he'll be a better fit with the Vikings than he would have been with most teams. He should be an important part of the Vikings' offense right off the bat.
Ted: Mackensie Alexander, CB. I probably have Alexander higher than I should, but if he catches on fast, you'll be hard pressed (pressed...press coverage...get it?!?!?!) to find a top four CB depth chart than Xavier Rhodes, Trae Waynes, Captain Munnerlyn, and Alexander. I think he's more prepared at this stage of his career than Waynes was, therefore I expect him to see more playing time than Waynes did. I'm excited to see what this kid has.
Eric: Terence Newman, CB. You know what they say about cornerbacks: as soon as they hit 38 years old, their production falls off a cliff. Wait, nobody says that. How is Newman still good at football? Let's hope whatever fountain of youth he was drinking from last season doesn't run dry, because the Vikings could definitely use him in the secondary again.
Ted: Trae Waynes, CB. I'm expecting big things out of Waynes this year. I thought he played very well at the end of the season, to include the playoff game against Seattle. I'm projecting him to start, and not only that, lead the team in interceptions this season. He's going to get ‘picked on' a lot, as teams will probably test him more than Xavier Rhodes, which will give him ample opportunities to make some plays. And I think he will.
Eric: Jerick McKinnon, RB. FREE MCKINNON! FREE MCKINNON! And it doesn't have to be at the cost of AP's snaps either! I'd love to see Norv Turner get more creative with how they get Jet the ball this season. Split backs, putting McKinnon in the slot, end arounds, fake reverses--whatever it is, he has earned it.
Ted: Shariff Floyd, DT. Although the Vikings picked up the fifth year option for Floyd back in May, sometimes I get the feeling the Vikings aren't always happy with his play. At times, Mike Zimmer has alluded to Floyd needing to step up or be more consistent. Floyd has played very well at times, though, and if he can step up at elevate his game in 2016, this defensive line will be terrifying.
Eric: Brian Robison, DE. Hey look--Ted and I finally agreed on a player AND a ranking! Spoiler alert: I have two defensive ends ranked ahead of B-Rob on my list, which means I see his role and playing time getting reduced this year. That said, he'll still be an important contributor to one of the deepest and most dangerous defensive lines in the league.
Ted: Brian Robison, DE. Robison is getting long in the tooth, but is still an effective run stopper and is the ‘savvy veteran' of a very good line. With Danielle Hunter pushing for playing time, I can see Robison's role on the field reduced some, but he's still got a lot left in the tank, and will be a solid veteran presence on this team.
Eric: Tom Johnson, DT. Having a non-starter this high on the list might seem like a bit of a stretch. But if Johnson was on nearly any other team in the NFL, he'd be a starter. Thankfully he remains the best backup D-lineman in the league and one of the best kept secrets of a lethal rotation up front.
Ted: Danielle Hunter, DE. I was skeptical when the Vikings picked Hunter in the 3rd round of the 2015 draft. He didn't produce a lot in a big time program, but the upside was his natural athletic ability, and proponents thought he would be a perfect fit, physically, for Mike Zimmer's defense. His proponents were right. He had a heck of a rookie campaign in a somewhat limited role, but he will take over for Brian Robison sooner rather than later. I expect a lot more playing time in the d-line rotation for Hunter in 2016, and won't be surprised if he ends up starting.
So, we're halfway home and we FINALLY have a player in the same range. Will we have more matches in our next installment? Stay tuned.