The Duel

3 Players the Vikings Need to Avoid With Their First-Round Picks

Zach Brunner
Three players the Vikings should avoid in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft.
Three players the Vikings should avoid in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft. / Michael Hickey/Getty Images
facebooktwitterreddit

The Minnesota Vikings have had an offseason highlighted more by the players going out the door than coming in. This leaves them with the most question marks and positional needs heading into the NFL Draft that they have had in a while.

We know head coach Mike Zimmer is also thinking about his defense, so the glaring needs on the defensive line and secondary are likely to be the team's primary focuses early in the draft. But with so many starters leaving this offseason, the pressure to hit on these early draft picks becomes even greater.

With that in mind, these are three players the Vikings need to avoid with their first-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

1. Noah Igbinoghene, CB, Auburn

Noah Igbinoghene is a track athlete and cornerback from Auburn.
Noah Igbinoghene is a track athlete and cornerback from Auburn. / James Gilbert/Getty Images

While Noah Igbinoghene plays a position of need for the Vikings, he is too risky for them to take with their first pick. Minnesota needs a day one contributor in the secondary, with Xavier Rhodes, Trae Waynes and Mackenzie Alexander all departing from the team. Igbinoghene is track athlete that can run with anyone, but he is raw and should be considered a high-risk, high-reward pick. No need to reach on cornerback with so many available in that range.

2. Tee Higgins, WR, Clemson

Tee Higgins is a top wide receiver prospect out of Clemson.
Tee Higgins is a top wide receiver prospect out of Clemson. / Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

Tee Higgins is one of the wide receivers projected to go around the Vikings' two picks. Higgins is an overall solid wide receiver, but after trading away Stefon Diggs, the Vikings are needing a player that can be a burner and stretch the field. While Higgins' 19.8 yards per reception in 2019 suggests that's the player he is, we didn't see him blowing by top talent down the field with his straight speed too often at Clemson. Despite losing Diggs, this team has much greater issues to address on defense. Whether you think Higgins fits or not, Minnesota would be wise to go in another direction in a very deep wide receiver draft.

3. Yetur Gross-Matos, EDGE, Penn State

Yetur Gross-Matos is a top edge rusher in the draft.
Yetur Gross-Matos is a top edge rusher in the draft. / Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Aside from the cornerback need, the Vikings also need to find a replacement for Everson Griffen. The long-time Viking earned his notoriety and pay check by getting after quarterbacks, but his ability to play the run, to complement his pass rush, is what made him great. Yetur Gross-Matos is a solid pass rusher, but he struggles identifying and defending the run at times. He saw his tackle and tackle for loss numbers take a sizable dip in 2019.


Get $20 FREE when you sign up for FanDuel Racing, plus we’ll match your first deposit in site credit up to $50!

facebooktwitterreddit