The Minnesota Vikings traded their first round pick on Thursday evening to the Detroit Lions, as was announced “last minute” at about 10:45 p.m. Eastern Time on ESPN’s live coverage of the 2010 NFL Draft, as the Vikes’ clock to make the 30th overall pick was about to run out. The Vikings are going to get Detroit’s high second and fourth round picks. This means that Minnesota will now have two second round picks (34th and 62nd overall, the former from the Lions). The team will also get the Lions second pick in Round 4 (100th overall) as of early Friday morning, subject to any maneuverings between them and other teams, according to ESPN.com. In addition, Detroit takes Minnesota’s 30th pick in Round 4 (128th overall).
What the Minnesota Vikings Need to Focus On in Round 2 of the 2010 NFL Draft Since They Traded Their First Round Pick Away
There’s was a rabid atmosphere conveyed during the 2010 NFL Draft, Day 1, which was held at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. This news of Minnesota forgoing a first round pick in order to pick higher in Rounds 2 and 4 of this much hyped-up event came hours after former Vikings defensive tackle John Randle was introduced before the NFL Draft began as part of the 2010 Hall of Fame class, which Randle was selected for this year. Rounds 2 is scheduled to begin Friday at 6 p.m. Eastern Time, and Minnesota has some key areas they need to focus on.
Minnesota could’ve taken either quarterbacks Colt McCoy or Jimmy Clausen, who were both left standing like unfortunate wallflowers at a dance after Round 1 was completed. Minnesota still has a shot at either one since they are scheduled to pick second on Friday in Round 2. Minnesota needs to think about their future at the quarterback position. Tarvaris Jackson is not the future whenever Brett Favre’s days are over.
On the other hand, I also agree with ESPN’s Mel Kiper, Jr., who hit it right on the head with his “Mel’s Team Needs” for the Purple People Eaters; that is, at the positions of cornerback, safety, and offensive line. The 2009 NFL statistics showed this via the graphics displayed on ESPN’s live coverage of the 2010 NFL Draft. Regarding cornerback and safety positions, the Minnesota Vikings need to improve upon their takeaways (Tied for 21st) and pass defense (19th). In several games last year, Vikes fans watched in dismay as their 6th ranked overall defense gave up many third down pass plays for first downs to opposing ball clubs, not to mention other big gains through the air by opposing quarterbacks. There needs to be an upgrade in play in the defensive backfield and/or when covering receivers, which this 2010 NFL Draft can help out with.
As for the offensive line position, it’s another area that needs improving. As the Vikings were getting ready to pick (before it was announced about their trade to the Lions, who picked Cal running back Jahvid Best), the graphics on ESPN showed the team’s rushing offense was ranked 13th in yardage. And while their passing yardage was in the top 25 per cent of the league (8th), Brett Favre was often getting hit really hard after he threw the ball. A team can never hurt itself getting more protection on the line, which means potentially more time for the quarterback to pass and be protected and for the backs to have more holes created for them to run through. If Farve does come back for the 2010 season, his 40-something body needs all the protection he can get.
Sources for this article about the Minnesota Vikings trading their first round pick away to Detroit in the 2010 NFL Draft:
2010 NFL Draft, Day 1, April 22, 2010, ESPN (Live coverage)
Minnesota Vikings 2010 Picks: http://insider.espn.go.com/nfl/draft/teams/_/team/min/minnesota-vikings, ESPN.com (subject to updating)