It's the last day of June, ladies and gentlemen. . .this means that we're less than a month away from the start of Training Camp and finally having something to talk about in detail.
So, since we need a topic of conversation, let's take a look at the Minnesota Vikings' draft class of 2016 and which players from that class are going to make the 53-man roster.
To refresh your memory, here's the entire list of players the Vikings selected back in May.
WR Laquon Treadwell
CB Mackensie Alexander
OL Willie Beavers
LB Kentrell Brothers
WR Moritz Böhringer
TE David Morgan
DE Stephen Weatherly
S Jayron Kearse
Obviously, Treadwell and Alexander are locks, so that gives us two. Let's take a look at the rest.
Beavers - This pick was widely panned by the experts everywhere in the days following the draft. Based on analytics and things of that nature, he was one of the worst-performing offensive tackles in college in 2015, but the Vikings apparently have him projected to move inside to guard. Alex Boone is locked into the left guard spot, but after Brandon Fusco's performance last year, the right guard spot could be up for grabs. I don't think there's any chance that Beavers starts at that spot in 2016, but the Vikings apparently saw something in him to take him in Round 4. I think he makes it.
Brothers - One of the most productive linebackers in college in 2015, he fell all the way to the fifth round because of the perception that he's only going to be a two-down player. Fortunately for him, that seems to be just the kind of linebacker the Vikings could use. With the other two linebacker spots being filled by Anthony Barr and Eric Kendricks, the Vikings could use a bigger guy in the middle of the defense. Brothers is also a tackling machine, which you'd have to think Mike Zimmer will love. We'll put him on the roster, too.
Böhringer - I know he's a great story and everything, but that doesn't change the fact that he has just about no chance of making the active roster this season. His best case scenario is probably going to be hanging around on the practice squad for a year. . .or two. . .and seeing if the coaches can harness his obvious athletic ability into something that can be productive at the NFL level.
Morgan - Morgan could be the beneficiary of Rhett Ellison's bad fortune. The reports thus far have had Ellison saying he'll be ready for camp, but if everyone gets to Mankato and Ellison can't go right away, he'll likely end up on the Physically Unable to Perform List. With the Vikings having tabbed Morgan as the draft's best blocking tight end, he could slide into Ellison's role until he recovers and be the blocking supplement to Kyle Rudolph and MyCole Pruitt. We'll give him a spot.
Weatherly - Weatherly was projected by most outlets as a 3-4 outside linebacker, but the Vikings took him with the intent of making him a hand on the ground defensive end. On most teams, his athleticism would give him a real shot. As it stands now, Weatherly is likely going to be fighting players like Justin Trattou for the #4 defensive end spot behind Everson Griffen, Danielle Hunter, and Brian Robison. The Vikings have a ton of depth on the defensive line, so I think Weatherly is going to have some tough sledding. We'll leave him off the roster for now.
Kearse - We know that the safety spot next to Harrison Smith has been a bit of a black hole and the Vikings have set up a battle royale for this summer to see who will fill the spot. Kearse has size going for him, but he's considered to be extremely raw. That might be to his disadvantage in this spot. The Vikings brought in veteran Michael Griffin this offseason, and have incumbent starter Andrew Sendejo in the mix, not to mention a real dark horse in Anthony Harris. I just don't see a spot for Kearse right now, unfortunately.
So, as it stands right now, I have five of the Vikings' eight draftees making the 53-man roster this summer. How about you? How many do you think will be on the roster for Week 1 at Tennessee?