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Mock Draft The Fourth: Still Fake, Still Fun

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We grind towards the real draft with even more fake ones

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to Friday, kids, and welcome to my fourth mock draft. Remember the ground rules:

1. I'm an idiot, and we should be thankful that I'm not running the real draft.

2. The 4th iteration of anything gets kind of lame, stale, and you start seeing the same storyline from previous sequels...and by story line I mean players.

3. It's fake. 100% made up. It's not even close to what the Vikings will do. IT WILL BE BETTER WOOOOOOO!!!!*

*It will not be better. But I've never drafted Willie Beavers and Spielman did, though, so....

We know the Vikings have a couple of big holes to fill in a couple weeks, and they are, at least the way I see it, as the following:

1) Interior Offensive Line

2) Defensive Tackle

3) Running back or WR

3) Good eye for Mike Zimmer

The last one we'll leave to competent medical authorities, but the first three we can try to do something about. My rules from the previous mock drafts I've done remain the same. I'm not going to move up unless there's a real stud sitting out there, but I'll look to trade down if there's a good deal on the table.

Same rules apply as before--I'm using the Fanspeak Ultimate GM site, and I used the CBS Sports big board, just because personal preference. To review, here are the picks for the Vikings:

Okay, let's do this.

First Round:

No pick because of the Sam Bradford trade. But hey, at least we no longer have a quarterback controversy in Minne--HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Second Round:

I had no trade offers as the round opened, but I did have a couple as I came on the clock. They were:

Not bad. But I don't like trading within the division, and the last time the Vikings made a trade with the Lions this high in the draft it was in 2010, and Minnesota ended up with Chris Cook. And as you know, we all have as many career interceptions as Chris Cook. So yeah, I was reluctant. Fortunately, I had a better offer from Miami:

Move down six spots, get an extra third rounder? Yeah, that's a no brainer, so I took it. Now, after the trade, these are my picks:

Not too bad, if I do say so myself. As I came on the clock, I had two more trade offers, but both of them took me out of the second round completely with only mid third round plus and additional later round picks, and I didn't like the offers. Here was the big board:

You just know the OSU homer in me is literally fake DYING that the two highest rated players on the board are Curtis Samuel and Raekwon McMillan. WR and LB are secondary positions of need, but the one player I think the team needs the most is sitting right there, making the selection an easy one:

Selection: Dan Feeney, G, Indiana.

Rationale: Guard and center are two critical needs, and Feeney is the best guard available. As tempting as a player like Samuel is here, or even QB Deshone Kizer if you think Bradford is short term and Teddy won't ever be whole again, the smart play here is Feeney.

Third Round:

I now have three picks in this round, and I still got the top interior lineman available. I'm feeling pretty happy about things, and once again, I got a couple trade offers as I came on the clock. And once again, They dropped me way down into the third round in return for fourth and fifth round compensation, and with all the extra compensatory picks I didn't want to miss out on filling some needs. So I passed on the two trade offers, and as I came on the clock with my first pick in the third round, this is what I had:

Again, there's a few options here. If I want interior line, Pat Elflein makes the most sense, but how can you not want the Asiata name to continue on the team? Jake Butt might be a decent option, as could hometown kid Jalen Myrick. But I still have two more picks in this round after this one, so I better not pass on a guy I want:

Selection: Pat Elflein, C, Ohio State

Rationale: When you add Elflein to Feeney in the second round, and the off season additions of Mike Remmers and Riley Reiff, the Vikings offensive line overhaul is fixed, for the most part, and for the foreseeable future. I have young guys ready to take over for vets like Joe Berger, I have depth, and I have experience.

And I still have two more picks in this round. The guys that came off the board between my first and second selection in this round are lined through (one pick was not on this list), and this was my big board for pick 22:

There are a few names that are sticking out to me, but one sticks out more than any other.

Selection: Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma

Rationale: Off the field issues aside, Mixon is the best running back in the draft and would be a huge boost to the Vikings offense. Just between you and me, I don't think Mixon becomes a Vikings for a couple reasons. For one, I just don't see him lasting this long. Someone will take him a lot earlier than this. Secondly, if for some reason Mixon is still on the board, the Vikings don't select guys with this kind of baggage. Still, he'd be a huge pick up here.

So now I have two offensive linemen and a running back, and my offense looks a lot better than it did at the beginning of this round. And I still have one more pick in this round. Here's my big board:

Again, still a lot of directions to go, Two wide receivers stand out, Carlos Henderson and Chad Hansen. But with the injury to Shariff Floyd and the age and injury of Tom Johnson, the Vikings really need some help on the defensive line, too:

Selection: Elijah Qualls, DT, Washington

Rationale: Qualls can be the run stuffing DT the Vikings need to complement Linval Joseph with, and he brings in much needed youth and health to a position group that needs it.

Fourth Round:

I'm pretty happy with what I've done so far, and I've addressed the most critical needs the Vikings have without having to reach for a player to fill those needs. I'm looking to get the best player available, but I still have an eye on maybe grabbing a linebacker or wide receiver. With two picks in this round, hopefully I can get both. Here's the big board:

Three of the top four players on the board are offensive linemen, and that would be overkill at this point. WR is really tempting, but with the emergence of Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs, I feel I have a more pressing need elsewhere, on the other side of the ball.

Selection: Anthony Walker, Jr., LB, Northwestern

Rationale: I'm pretty happy to see a guy like Walker here, and this would be a steal. With Chad Greenway retiring and Anthony Barr's play taking a noticeable dip in 2016, LB feels like the bigger need earlier in the draft than WR does, and Walker makes a lot of sense here.

With my second fourth round pick, my big board shook out like so:

At this point, I'm asking myself who is the best player that can help me the most, with an eye towards the starting lineup. You're probably thinking Taywan Taylor, and he had some eye popping numbers. Against Alabama, he put enough on tape to ensure he'll be drafted, even though he's from a small school. But...I like another player a little bit better here:

Selection: Justin Evans, S, Texas A and M

Rationale: Are the Vikings sold on Andrew Sendejo long term next to Harrison Smith? Is Jayron Kearse a potential answer? Antone Exum, Jr? I'm not sold, and I don't know that the Vikings are, either. WR makes sense here, and a really good argument can be made for Taylor, but I like Evans a lot.

Fifth Round:

As we get on the back side of the draft, let's see what we're looking at for the big board:

I've passed on a WR a few times. I'm not going to do that in this round.

Selection: Isaiah McKenzie, WR, Georgia

Rationale: With Cordarrelle Patterson now on the Raiders, the Vikings need a speedster that can stretch the field and return kicks.

Sixth Round:

I'm just looking for some value now. Here's my big board:

There are a couple players here that stick out. I like this guy:

Selection: Ben Gedeon, LB, Michigan

Rationale: Gedeon fills out the Vikings LB corps, and can compete on special teams.

Seventh Round:

Here's the big board for my last pick:

Best player available is a guy plays a position the Vikings need help in. Simple:

Selection: Keionta Davis, DE, Chattanooga

Rationale: He's a defensive end that could eventually work his way into the line rotation. Or get cut during training camp. I mean come on, he's a seventh round pick.

So, here's the draft recap for Ted 4.0:

Strengths: I addressed all my needs, and where I needed help the most, I feel I got the most talent. The offensive line is solid, running back is set with Mixon, and Elijah Qualls really adds depth to the defensive line. I think I got solid value up and down the draft, and added players everywhere I needed them.

Weaknesses: Although I like McKenzie's return ability, I probably waited too long to get a WR. I think Justin Evans is a better safety than Taywan Taylor is a wide receiver, but there's a good case to be made that Taylor was a bigger need at that point.

If you're interested in seeing how the entire draft played out, clickity click here.

Enjoy your weekend, folks.