Chicago Bears NFC North Rivals: A look at the Minnesota Vikings

In our third and final series looking at NFC North rival this off-season and their draft needs on April 25, we look at the Minnesota Vikings, who must find their quarterback of the future while also trying to keep Justin Jefferson happy.
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The draft needs for the Vikings



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From Houston

1. Quarterback

In a pre-draft deal, they acquired Houston's 1st-round pick(23rd overall) and their 7th-round pick(232nd pick) on March 15. They sent their 2nd-round pick(42nd pick), 6th-round pick(188th pick), and 2025 2nd-round pick. The deal was made shortly after Kirk Cousins signed with the Atlanta Falcons on March 13. The deal was made presumably for the Vikings to get more draft capital to move into the top 5 for a quarterback not named Caleb WIlliams.

The question remains as to how far they are willing to move up. Are they willing to part ways with the 2025 1st round pick if necessary to move into the top 3-5 range? The Vikings are not exactly known as an organization that takes risks. But they may have to this year. They took a chance on Randy Moss in the 1st round back in the 1998 draft that turned out great.

The last time they drafted a quarterback in the 1st round was Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater picked 32nd overall in 2014. Unfortunately, his promising career was marred by injuries and he ended up retiring this off-season. But it is time for the Vikings to draft their franchise quarterback to keep up with the rest of the NFC North. Whether it is Drake Maye or JJ McCarthy, if they get the right quarterback, the NFC North could be scary and ultra-competitive for years to come.

2. Defensive Line

They added edge rusher Jonathan Greenard, but he could use more help, especially from interior pass rush. Harrison Phillips and former Bear Jonathan Bullard are very good run-stoppers. They also added Jerry Tillery and Jonah Williams in free agency, but none offers the kind of pass rush that Vikings legend John Randle or Kevin Williams used to provide. Should they swing for the fence to draft a quarterback, not having their second-round pick could become costly.

Also, even though they signed Greenard and Van Ginkel, they could use more depth at the edge position and develop a pass-rush specialist.

3. Cornerback

They brought back Byron Murphy for a 2-year deal after he joined them on a 1-year deal from the Arizona Cardinals last off-season. They also added Shaq Griffin who played for Houston and Carolina last season to a 1-year contract. Many believe signing Griffin will allow Murphy to play more in the slot.

Other notable names include Andrew Booth Jr., who was drafted in the second round out of Clemson in 2022 and seems like a forgotten man buried deep in the depth chart, and Mehki Blackmon, a rookie last season. They must provide defensive coordinator Brian Flores with more cornerback help to deal with DJ Moore, Amon-Ra St. Brown, and Christian Watson.

4. Wide Receiver

With All-Pro Justin Jefferson and Jordan Addison, and tight end TJ Hockenson already on the roster, no other rookie quarterback besides Caleb Williams will walk into a better situation to start his NFL career than the Vikings. But they need to add more depth because KJ Osborn left the team via free-agency and Jefferson suffered an injury that forced him to miss 7 games last season.