Vikings Work Trade, Then Take Kalil With No. 4 Pick
I thought the Minnesota Vikings handled their first pick in the NFL draft perfectly. Ultimately, they wanted nasty LT Matt Kalil and would’ve been happy to take him with the 3rd pick. However, Cleveland feared they may lose the player they wanted so they moved up to the 3rd pick in a trade that moved the Vikings to the 4th pick. In a nutshell, the Vikings got the player they wanted, paid less for him, and then acquired 3 additional picks from Cleveland. They then used that Cleveland trade to move back into the first round to get Notre Dame safety Harrison Smith in the 1st round.
Only time will tell how everything shakes out, but I think these moves were great in that they added athletes to a Vikings roster that desperately needs them. What do you think of the Vikings first round moves?
Perhaps one day, way up the road, Rick Spielman will reveal the true secrets of his first draft as Vikings general manager.
Maybe one day in the distant future we’ll all learn more about the poker game he played from January through mid-April, hiding his hand and never letting down his guard. At some point, conceivably, the details may surface to explain how Spielman strategically attacked the first round of his first full draft as GM with such skill.
Yet all that really mattered Thursday night was that the Vikings dived headfirst into the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft and emerged not only with a prospect they badly wanted — Southern Cal left tackle Matt Kalil — but also with a trade that brought them three additional draft picks.
No wonder Spielman seemed to be glowing when he stepped to a lectern in the Winter Park field house after finalizing the Kalil pick as well as that something-for-nothing trade with the Cleveland Browns.
As it turns out, Spielman scared the Browns into a draft night do-si-do, fleecing them of fourth-round, fifth-round and seventh-round picks as the teams swapped places at the top of Round 1.
“Before we got on the clock, there was a lot of activity,” Spielman said. “Around 5 o’clock, multiple teams had started to call. So you felt that that jockeying and that positioning was going to take place. And once we talked to Cleveland and got the deal in place that we got, we were very excited about that.”