2023 NFL Draft Grades: Evaluating Winners and Losers

Minnesota Vikings

Grade: B+

The Vikings were set on getting receiver help even after they saw three wideouts consecutively selected right before them. Minnesota kept the run on WR’s going with the selection of USC pass catcher Jordan Addison. The team needed another option opposite Justin Jefferson following the departure of longtime stalwart Adam Thielen. Addison plays bigger than his slight frame would suggest, and has impressive route-running chops. Not wanting to stray out of Southern California, the Vikings added another former Trojan in CB Mekhi Blackmon. He’ll help add some youth in a secondary which signed former Cardinal Byron Murphy Jr. this offseason.

After taking two USC players, the Vikings kept with the theme of pairs by taking back-to-back LSU defenders with their next two selections. Jay Ward is a versatile defensive back who can play safety or nickel corner, and DT Jaquelin Roy figures to be a nice rotation piece up front who can help Minnesota’s miserable run defense. Though some predicted the Vikings to use an early pick on a young QB, they waited until Round 5 to address that spot with BYU’s Jaren Hall. He will contend with veteran Nick Mullens for the backup role behind Kirk Cousins.

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