On Friday night, the Minnesota Vikings wound up making all four of their third-round selections, and they used the last one to try to give themselves some help on the edge.
With the 90th pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, the Minnesota Vikings have selected Patrick Jones, a defensive end from the University of Pittsburgh.
Jones teamed with Rashad Weaver, another draftable prospect, to give the Panthers a pretty solid pass rush this past season. Some might be surprised that Jones went ahead of Weaver in this year’s draft, but his First-Team All-ACC credentials mean that it shouldn’t be too terribly surprising.
Dane Brugler of The Athletic has Jones ranked as his #14 edge defender in this year’s draft. Here’s what Brugler has to say about Jones:
A pin-your-ears-back rusher, Jones plays his tail off and when he finds a pursuit/rush lane, it is like a bull seeing red. However, he is an “all gas, no brakes” type of player, which is both a compliment (speed, effort) and a concern (inconsistent handwork, over-running plays). Overall, Jones is a linear rusher who needs to be more efficient with his plan of attack and execution, but his length, burst and mindset are encouraging foundation traits. He projects as a potential NFL starter in a 4-3 base.
The Vikings do have a need on the edges of their defense across from Danielle Hunter, and it sounds like Jones will get an opportunity to make some contributions right away in passing situations, if nothing else. Let’s see what Andre Patterson and company can do with him.
Welcome to Minnesota, Patrick Jones!