The NFL Combine starts next week on February 27th and runs through March 6th. Here is a link to a schedule ...
The on-field workouts are ...
Defensive Line: Thursday, March 2
Linebackers: Thursday, March 2
Defensive Backs: Friday, March 3
Special Teams: Friday, March 3
Quarterbacks: Saturday, March 4
Wide Receivers: Saturday, March 4
Tight Ends: Saturday, March 4
Offensive Linemen: Sunday, March 5
Running Backs: Sunday, March 5
A lot more information will come out of the combine about the players and possibly even some gossip/rumors about team decisions in free agency.
The mock drafts we do at Drafttek do not necessarily take into account any predicted changes the team could make. We simply have to take an “educated” (I use this word very loosely) guess.
The Vikings are currently 24M over the salary cap and must make changes. They will be difficult but they are necessary. It’s possible to restructure a bunch of deals to kick the can until next year but then, in 2024, they probably will have to do serious cuts. I think they should do most of the cuts this year.
This version (posted February 23rd) took a guess that the team will trade or cut several defenders, work out a restructure (er., pay cut) with Thielen, and cut/trade Cook & H. Smith.
Round 1 Pick 23 Antonio Johnson S/CB Texas A&M
Height: 6’3” Weight: 200
Round 3 Pick 87 Julius Brents CB Kansas State
Height: 6’3” Weight: 202 33 3/4” arms
Round 4 Pick 118 Mike Morris DL5T Michigan
Height: 6’6” Weight: 292 33 6/8” arms
Round 5 Pick 158 Ivan Pace Jr. LB Cincinnati
Height: 5’10.7” Weight: 230 30 3/4” arms
R6 Pick 199 Kenny McIntosh RB Georgia
Height: 5’11.7” Weight: 210 30 5/8” arms
R6 Pick 209 Juice Scruggs OC Penn State
Height: 6’4” Weight: 300 33 3/8” arms
R6 Pick 212 McClendon Curtis OT/OG UT Chattanooga
Height: 6’6” Weight: 328 35” arms
Here is a link to the Vikings page which includes a first round comment.
The Vikings new Defensive Coordinator, Brian Flores, loves to blitz the passer. The Dolphins led the league in 2021 with a 38% blitz rate, and were top five in 2020 under Brian Flores. In 2021, the Dolphins were second in the league, using their base 3-4 personnel 34% of the time, but they were also first in usage of dime (six DBs) personnel, at 31%, per Football Outsiders. They also used nickel (five DBs) at a 33% rate. The Vikings will need to upgrade their defensive backfield in order to run the types of packages that Flores utilizes.
Antonio Johnson is listed as a safety but he played 280 snaps out of 582 snaps in the slot last year. In 2021, he played 603 out of 800 snaps in the slot. He really is a hybrid safety/cornerback and he limited his 62 targets last season to a grand total of 228 yards. That comes out to only 3.7 yards per target.
I think Johnson would be a fantastic pick regardless of what Cine is able to do.
One of my favorite Safeties in 2023 NFL Dragt is Texas AM Antonio Johnson:— Jared Tokarz (@JaredNFLDraft) January 13, 2023
6’3 190lbs he brings size/versatility paired with the ability to come up & make a big hit. Would’ve liked to see more takeaways in 2022 but expect him to be picked late 1st/2nd
Julius Brents would be another excellent addition to the secondary. Considering Cameron Dantzler is entering the final year of his rookie deal, Kwesi may be able to get a 5th to 7th round pick if he decides to trade Dantzler. The team also should not put complete faith in Andrew Booth or Akayleb Evans.
I like a secondary of Cine, Bynum, Metellus, Booth, Evans, Dantzler, Johnson, Brents, and probably Shelley.
Mike Morris would obviously be a developmental 5 technique as most fourth round picks do need time. Plus, Lynch and Blacklock will be in the final years of their deals and neither one is guaranteed a roster spot.
Ivan Pace Jr is a bit undersized in terms of height but is one of the fastest linebackers since Tory Anderson.
Fastest LB at 2022 @seniorbowl was Falcons second-rounder Troy Anderson at 20.29 mph per @ZebraTechnology. Anderson blazed 4.42 official 40-yd dash time at Combine.— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) February 18, 2023
This year’s fastest LB in Mobile was Cincy’s Ivan Pace Jr. at ridiculous 20.58 mph. Get your ready for Indy! pic.twitter.com/yxZG4KyUji
Kenny McIntosh is a good candidate to handle third down duties as he is a good pass catcher.
The current age of NFL football has seen the running back position evolve into a serious receiving threat. Players such as Alvin Kamara and Austin Ekeler have become matchup nightmares for opposing defenses as legitimate pass catchers that can also tote the rock. McIntosh played a role extremely similar to this for Georgia in the 2022 season.
During his 2022 campaign, McIntosh was the workhorse for the Georgia offense, carrying the ball 150 times for 829 yards. While his running abilities were certainly on full display, his pass-catching abilities were a major component of the Bulldogs’ success in 2022. As a running back, McIntosh was 3rd in total receiving yards as well as receptions during the Bulldogs’ second national championship run. His 888 total career receiving yards are the highest of any running back in the history of the University of Georgia.
Juice Scruggs is a solid prospect that has a chance to evolve into a starter which is what you want when you draft a center. It usually takes a couple of years for most.
McClendon has played in 38 games and appeared in 48 games over his career. Curtis primarily started at right guard, but he also has some experience at left guard and started several games at left tackle in 2022.
Well, there it is.