For football fans, this week is like the week leading up to Christmas, because it’s the week of the NFL Draft. As kid, I would sometimes worry about “Santa” not bringing that present that I really wanted. And football fans have a similar type of dread when it comes to the draft.  

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That dread comes from a couple angles with the NFL draft, first will my team draft the guy we really want (some teams always seem to misidentify the right guy), and then will that player turnout to be a star in the first couple of years.  

It’s like gambling, there’s a risk that must be calculated.  

The Minnesota Vikings have two first round picks this year, and the ultimate pick is that “present” fans really want Santa to bring, and this year it’s a franchise quarterback.  

2022 NFL Draft - Rounds 2-3
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When Kirk Cousins decided to move his family to his wife’s home state of Georgia to play for Atlanta, the speculation began of what would the Vikings do to get the best quarterback possible. Afterall, you have to draft a quarterback in the first-round right? 

For months “Professional Analysts” have been putting together their thoughts on what each team will/should do. This week, I was looking at what a lot of them thought the Vikings would do. And most of them had Minnesota trading up and giving the team they trade with both of their first-round picks to move up. 

2023 NFL Draft - Round 1
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Here's another thought process to consider. And as you do, remember that I’m a fan, but I don’t study the draft closely and I can’t name players that could fit the roles I’m about to speak of.  

I mentioned earlier there is a risk with the draft, especially with quarterbacks in the first round, so I propose the Vikings do make a trade, but trade backward.  

Give the number 11 pick to a team who needs/wants to move up, and you still get a first-round pick later in the round. This is a move that helps the other team get a player they really want, so the cost for The Vikings to make that move is the other teams pick in the second round in addition to their first-round pick. 

2022 NFL Draft - Round 1
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After the Vikings have the number eleven pick, they have the twenty-third pick in the first round, and then don’t pick again until the fourth round. That’s two full rounds of players the team has to stand by idle and watch get drafted by other teams.  

Trading back allows you to do a couple of things. First, they may still get a really good quarterback who you can bring along a little slower and at less money. Second, they could find a stud to fill another need on the team, of which there are a few. Third, get a quarterback in the 2nd round, and then not have such a high price tag attached to that arm and the pressure might not be as severe because it’s not a top five pick or one that came in the first round.  

2022 NFL Draft - Round 1
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As I said, I can’t tell you which quarterbacks will be there in the 2nd round, but just watching the draft as I have over the years, there’s normally one guy who falls in positioning or a guy you can pick up there that overachieves.  

Here’s another reason to trade back, the Vikings have five picks between the fifth and seventh rounds. The percentage of draft picks from the fifth round that make the team is four to five percent. Picks drafted in the sixth round that make a team are only about two percent and seventh round picks that are on the squad on opening day are only one to two percent.  

Trade back, get a second-round pick for a player who is more likely to not only make the team, but make an impact. It may not be the splashy name fans and the media are thirsty for, but if the Vikings can be smart in their moves, and you win ballgames, who cares if it was the sexy pick.  

Just ask San Francisco fans as Mr. Irrelevant from a few years ago, Brock Purdy, led their team to the Super Bowl this past year.  

Super Bowl LVIII - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs
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I’m sure there are others out there who have talked about this same plan being good for Minnesota, I’m just not seeing or hearing from them lately. To me, giving up both first round picks for one player seems to be a bit too risky.  

 

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