Thanks to “VikingsFanInChennai” for mentioning this in this weekend’s Discussion Thread.
We missed this in the more immediate aftermath of the 2019 NFL Draft, but the father of new Minnesota Vikings’ wide receiver Dillon Mitchell took to Twitter a week ago to thank the Vikings for drafting his son, and shed a little light on why he was available in the seventh round.
If you’re having difficulty reading the tweet, the entirety of Marcus Mitchell’s statement is as follows:
One week ago today the Minnesota Vikings @Vikings drafted my son, @DMFM1_ taking a chance on him and giving him an opportunity. I want to personally thank the Vikings ofganization myself for the once in a lifetime opportunity. Due to a few entrusted individuals with ill intent (and you know who you are) who gave NFL teams some false negative info about his team character he dropped in the draft from a 3rd round graded selection to the 7th round. His head coach verified that the info was false and not true but teams went with it anyway. Everyone who really knows him knows that his skills speak for themselves and what his true team character really is, which is to work hard to be the best player he can be for his team. To those individuals as the saying goes “No man can stop what God has for you.” Again @Vikings Thank You!
Now, I assume that by saying that Mitchell was a “3rd round graded selection,” the elder Mitchell is referring to the grade that Dillon Mitchell received from the College Advisory Committee, the body that college underclassmen are able to consult with when making their decision to declare for the Draft or not. Obviously, we can’t confirm that one way or another, but that’s the impression I get from the statement.
Dillon Mitchell was coming off of a season where he set the Oregon school record for receiving yardage with 1,184 yards on 75 receptions, and also had ten receiving touchdowns. He did come out after his junior year, which is more reason to believe that he did get a decent grade from the advisory board. I wouldn’t think he would have declared for the draft otherwise.
I haven’t been able to find anything resembling a mark against Mitchell’s character, whether on the field or off, from any sort of search that I’ve done. I don’t recall hearing anything during the pre-draft process, either.
If Mitchell was given a third-round grade by the College Advisory Committee and wasn’t selected until the Vikings grabbed him at #239 overall, it certainly sounds like he’s going to get to Eagan this summer with some extra motivation to make his way up a wide receiver depth chart that, after the first two spots, is pretty much wide open.