2017 Draft Grades and Analysis
Rank – — 0verall
Round 2, Pick 9 (41)
RB – Dalvin Cook, Florida State / A
This pick has probably been my most interesting one to grade thus far. I was never a member of the Cook bandwagon and had openly questioned his true value as a pro prior to the combine. However, this might be the perfect landing spot for Dalvin. With Latavius Murray on the roster and the ability for the Vikings to utilize two backs with differing skill sets in a split time/situational rotation, Cook will have his best chance to continue his collegiate success as a homerun threat. This is a high upside pick with a limited floor, based on Minnesota’s ability to lean on more than one option on the ground in 2017.
Round 3, Pick 6 (70)
C- Pat Elflein, Ohio State / A
The Vikings snag a starter in the offensive interior with Pat Elfien. A solid run blocker and the likely starter at right guard, Pat will go a long way towards making the selection of Cook and the acquisition of Murray a success.
Round 4, Pick 2 (109)
DT – Jaleel Johnson, Iowa / C+
I’m much higher on Johnson playing the nose in the 3-4 than I am his playing DT in a 4-3. This feels like a coaches pick with not much on tape to back up a solid fit with the defensive system in Minnesota. Considering the players still available and the other issues on the roster, this pick appears to be low value.
Round 4, Pick 14 (120)
ILB – Ben Gedeon, Michigan / A-
Minnesota gets a player in the upper fourth that has the correct physical make-up and attitude to mold into a long term starter at LB. There’s some work to be done with Ben before he can be relied on in an every weekend role, but I like this pick quite a bit.
Round 5, Pick 27 (170)
WR – Rodney Adams, South Florida / C
Adams is a severely underdeveloped route runner that will need some time to adjust to the pro game, specifically with working on timing with his quarterback. There is some physical skill here to mold, but he needs to add some solid weight and lose the fear of a dirty jersey.
Round 5, Pick 37 (180)
OG – Danny Isidora, Miami / B+
I think the future for Danny Isidora lies in making a transition to center, so this pick gets an ever so slight bump up considering the current make-up of the Vikings offensive line.
Round 6, Pick 17 (201)
TE – Bucky Hodges, Virginia Tech / A+
The Vikings would be wise to find ways to manufacture one on one coverage for Bucky Hodges from off tackle, in the slot and lined up wide. Hodges has some very real upside and is a solid pick in the 6th round for a team that needs more weapons in the passing game on offense. Bucky could develop into a seam ripping threat with good run after the catch ability in the short game as well.
Round 7, Pick 1 (219)
WR – Stacy Coley, Miami / D+
I don’t believe that Coley has a spot on the Vikings roster. With other options available and needs still apparent, this feels like a throw away pick.
Round 7, Pick 2 (220)
DL – Ifeadi Odenigbo, Northwestern / B
I would not be surprised in the least if Odenigbo earns a key spot along the Minnesota defensive line before the end of his rookie deal. There is an issue with weight, but Ifeadi has the room to grow and if he can get over 275 while retaining his lateral movement he has the potential to be a better selection than 4th round pick Jaleel Johnson.
Round 7, Pick 14 (232)
LB – Elijah Lee, Kansas State / A-
Did the Vikings draft a Chad Greenway clone at the end of day 3? If you compare the combine and pro day numbers they are eerily similar. This is a high value pick for a team that is looking for play-makers to step up behind their defensive line. I believe Lee can be the long term answer for when Lamur’s contract expires in 2018.
Round 7, Pick 27 (245)
CB – Jack Tocho, N.C. State / B+
This pick, for being late in the 7th, is far from a throw away as the Vikings were in need of depth in the defensive backfield, specifically with players that may provide some positional flexibility. Tocho looks the part of a staring NFL DB and has the movement skills to stick on a roster for multiple contracts.