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Freakout's Final Mock.

 
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Freakout


Joined: 05 Mar 2007
Posts: 4216
PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 2:08 pm    Post subject: Freakout's Final Mock. Reply with quote

I have tried to keep this mock realistic. In fact I hate several parts of it Laughing

ROSTER MANAGEMENT

Free Agents Re-signed

OC Joe Berger - He comes cheap and with Sullivan recovering from his micro-fracture procedure the team decides to keep him around.

FB Jerome Felton - I saw a stat showing that most of Peterson's big runs the past season involved a Felton block. This is a no brainer.

LB Erin Henderson - I believe when the dust settles Henderson will be staying and Brinkley will be signing with another team. I believe the coaching staff favors Henderson.

CB A.J. Jefferson - He is definitely kept around one more year. Having cornerback depth is critical in our divison.

CB Marcus Sherels - The team exercises his option but he doesn't make it out of camp.

SS Jamarca Sanford - Whether his play was from self improvement or Alan Williams putting him in situations that allowed him to succeed. Either way he earned a new contract.


Players Released

QB Joe Webb - Despite what they say, I do not believe the coaching staff has any confidence in him. I also do not see any team giving up a draft pick for him.

WR Michael Jenkins - I actually like Jenkins and if you use him correctly he is not a bad possession receiver. Unfortunately, his salary is a bit pricey and that will likely get him cut.

DE DeAndre Reed - There just hasn't been enough development from him. It isn't a good sign when the team is signing UFA's during the season and activating them ahead of you.

CB Brandon Burton - This is a very similar situation as the one with Reed. The difference is whether or not he ever was a good fit for our scheme.

FS Andrew Sendejo - Just another body that will be replaced by someone else.


Free Agents Lost

RT Phil Loadholt - I hope I am wrong and that Phil is re-signed but I could see him asking for more money than Spielman is willing to pay.

LB Jasper Brinkley - I am sure that he is aware that if he stays he is nothing more than a 2 down player.


New Contracts, Extensions, Restructures

Jared Allen gets a contract extension. He is the one guy, in my opinion, that is completely exempt from the "Out with the old, in with the new." approach. When you have a RDE like Jared, you ride him until the wheels fall off.

Percy Harvin gets a new contract. It is easy to say trade him but then you are in a situation where you almost become forced into landing Jennings or Wallace. I just believe this is a very fluid situation and several things will have to happen in order for the team to trade him. I do not expect this to be a quick resolution but I do believe he will remain a Viking.

Kevin Williams agrees to restructure his contract. I believe he was sincere when he said he wants to retire a Viking.


Free Agents Acquired

QB Tyler Thigpen - 6'1 218 lbs.

There were rumors during the 2011 season that Spielman wanted Thigpen. He has a similar skillset as Ponder and could potentially handle the backup duties without the need to change the offense.

OG Chad Rinehart - 6'5 321 lbs

I do not see Spielman going with a mid round rookie as a backup to Charlie Johnson and Brandon Fusco. He will look for a young veteran with some starting experience. Rinehart has been a reliable backup for the Bills, though he has had trouble staying healthy.

WR Brandon Gibson - 6'0 205 lbs.

Spielman will throw an offer at Mike Wallace but I believe the attempt will fall short. Similar to when he let Sidney Rice walk and refused to overpay last season for Pierre Garcon. Financially he has a fixed ceiling that he does not cross. I believe he will shift his focus targeting the Breaston, Gibson, and Massaquoi's of the league.

DT Terrance Knighton - 6'3 330 lbs.

I believe Spielman will look to upgrade the DT position. I feel he showed his hand by bringing Brian Price in for two workouts. It just reminded me a lot of the way he showed interest in Max Starks and Ryan Harris. When it became clear that Charlie Johnson couldn't handle the LT position he started looking at other options. Knighton would be an immediate starter and would create a nice rotation with Fred Evans. I like Sammie Lee Hill as well but I am a little unsure about him compared to Terrance Knighton. I feel this is a position that you can target in free agency that will give good return on the investment.

CB D.J. Moore - 5'9 180 lbs.

He has already been informed that he will not be returning to Chicago. I think it would be wise to bring him in as Winfield's backup. We can't afford having Sherels getting any playing time.


THE DRAFT

1. (#23) RT D.J. Fluker - Alabama - 6'5 339 lbs.

Losing Phil Loadholt would be an enormous blow to our offensive line. If Fluker is available I do believe Spielman would strongly consider him in this scenario. As a fan I cringe at the thought but I also understand how important the run game is to our teams success.

2. (#52) WR Markus Wheaton - Oregon State - 5'11 189 lbs.

I predict Spielman will strike out on Mike Wallace. However, I believe there is a certain type of receiver they want. There were rumors during the 2012 draft that Spielman wanted Chris Givens early in the 4th round. Both Wallace and Givens are vertical (X) receivers that take the top off of opposing defenses. I compare it to boxing with Peterson, Harvin, and Rudolph being the jabs, uppercuts, and body shots. They want a guy that can be the right hook. We need a receiver that can consistently get a step or two on his defender when we run play-action.

3. (#83) CB Dwayne Gratz - Connecticut - 5'11 201 lbs.

There isn't a real need for a starter at cornerback but this is a position where we are an injury away from being in big trouble. Dwayne Gratz has really helped his draft stock with good showings during Senior Bowl week and at the Combine. There are definitely similarities between Gratz and others cornerbacks we have taken in the past (Chris Cook and Cedric Griffin). I also believe he is a good scheme fit and could potentially start for us opposite Chris Cook if Josh Robinson cannot handle lining up outside.

4. (#99) DE John Simon - Ohio State - 6'1 257 lbs. - from Detroit

It almost seems that every year a good DE prospect drops into the fourth round and Spielman manages to be sitting there waiting for him. I believe Simon is going to be viewed as a tweener but I look at him as a LDE in a 4-3 scheme. The lack of elite athetic ability hurts his stock but he makes up for it by having a very high motor. He is a weight room junkie and fits the mold of players Spielman targets (similar to Rhett Ellison).

4. (#117) WR Marquess Wilson - Washington State - 6'3 194 lbs.

I do not think you can pass on Wilson when you are a team that has been desperate for receiving help. Tampa Bay took a chance on Mike Williams in the fourth round of the 2010 draft and it has been an absolute steal. At this point in the draft it doesn't hurt to take a chance on a kid.

5. (#148) ILB A.J. Klein - Iowa State - 6'1 250 lbs.

I know everyones heart is set on getting a starting linebacker in either the 1st or 2nd round. However, it does not appear that Spielman puts a lot of emphasis on drafting linebackers early in the draft. Let us not forget that he was not responsible for drafting Chad Greenway. He took Jasper Brinkley in the 5th round, Erin Henderson was undrafted, Audie Cole in the 7th round, Ross Homan in the 6th round, Nate Triplett in the 5th round, Rufus Alexander 6th round. Klein surprised people by running a respectable 4.66 40 at the Combine. He isn't going to standout in shorts running drills but when the pads go on he is all over the field. He had a good showing at the East-West Shrine game that capped off a very productive college career.

6. (#179) RB Kerwynn Williams - Utah State - 5'8 195 lbs.

Marcus Sherels had a good season for the team returning punts but he is a huge liability when asked to actually play defense. I believe the cornerback position is a position that we cannot afford to have special teamers only taking up roster spots. It is much more simple when your punt / kick returner is also your third string running back.

7. (#) TE Michael Williams - Alabama - 6'6 269 lbs.

If there was one team in the league that would value a big blocking tight end it would be the Vikings.

I do not believe Spielman keeps both 7th round draft picks. I have him trading pick #213 for a 2014 6th round pick.


2013 ROSTER

QB: Christian Ponder | Tyler Thigpen | McLeod Bethel-Thompson
RB: Adrian Peterson | Toby Gerhart | Kerwynn Williams
FB: Jerome Felton
TE: Kyle Rudolph | Rhett Ellison | John Carlson | Michael Williams
WR: Markus Wheaton | Percy Harvin | Jarius Wight | Brandon Gibson | Marquess Wilson | Stephen Burton
OT: Matt Kalil | D.J. Fluker | DeMarcus Love
OG: Charlie Johnson | Brandon Fusco | Chad Rinehart
OC: John Sullivan | Joe Berger

DE: Jared Allen | Brian Robison | Everson Griffen | John Simon
DT: Terrance Knighton | Kevin Williams | Fred Evans | Letroy Guion | Christian Ballard
LB: Chad Greenway | Erin Henderson | Audie Cole | A.J. Klein | Tyrone McKenzie | Larry Dean
CB: Chris Cook | Antoine Winfield | Josh Robinson | D.J. Moore | AJ Jefferson | Dwayne Gratz
S: Harrison Smith | Jamarca Sanford | Mistral Raymond | Robert Blanton


K: Blair Walsh
P: Chris Kluwe
LS: Cullen Loeffler
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vikingsrule


Joined: 15 Nov 2005
Posts: 52626
Location: Land of 10,000 Lakes!
PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am not a fan of Thigpen, what I remember him for when he was younger was the offense having to change to fit his skill set as more of a spread type passer. I would prefer more of a traditionally trained QB. However, Thigpen is more seasoned now than when he was younger, so perhaps he has the tools to play in a traditional offense. Basically, you shouldnt have to change your offense to fit your backup QBs need. You should expect a seamless transition from starter to backup in terms of play calling and schematics.

Rinehart isnt a bad backup option.

Gibson and Knighton are solid free agents to bring in, and should be starters.

I like DJ Moore a lot, he has the tools to be an inside CB and is a good fit for the Cover 2. I believe Moore returns kicks or punts, at least he did in college.

I am not a fan of DJ Fluker in round one. I dont think he will be a RT at the next level and I dont think the Vikings need to spend a first rd pick to fill the void from losing Loadholt. There are plenty of RT options in the 2nd and 3rd rd. I would rather see Fluker play OG at the next level, but even then, I dont think taking an OG is a smart way to go in round one either. I would prefer impact players with that first pick, like a MLB or WR.

I love the Wheaton pick in round 2, he is quickly becoming a top 5 WR in this draft for me.

Gratz is another good pick, great physical tools and athleticism and is a good fit to replace Winfield in the slot.

I dont like Simon. Looking at the type of DEs the Vikings prefer, I would expect more of a 6-4 to 6-5 DE with a long wingspan. Guys like Griffen, Robison and Edwards were all tall and lanky players.

The Williams are nice picks as well.

Overall, this isnt a bad mock. However, your decision to not bring back Brinkley and not find an early round upgrade concerns me. To me, if Brinkley isnt coming back, a MLB will be selected early.

I feel that pick 23 would be better implemented on a MLB if you stick with Wheaton in round 2.


I also disagree with your take on Harvin. If the Vikings dont land a top free agent WR, why does that impact Harvins situation? They play different positions so one really shouldnt affect the other. The Vikings still should consider trading Harvin if they dont land Wallace or Jennings, since neither player would replace Harvin. Jarius Wright would replace Harvin, and he is on the roster regardless. If MN loses out on a top free agent WR, I hope that isnt a reason to overpay for Harvin. How much do you expect Harvin to sign for?
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joru1000


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 3:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thats a depressing draft/offseason. losing loadholt only to have us have to draft a RT to replace him in the 1st round. then we get a mediocre wide receiver in round 2 who may not even replace harvin who by the way will probably sit out until being traded. and on top of that we dont get a linebacker.


id be sad, man
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vikingsrule


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

joru1000 wrote:
thats a depressing draft/offseason. losing loadholt only to have us have to draft a RT to replace him in the 1st round. then we get a mediocre wide receiver in round 2 who may not even replace harvin who by the way will probably sit out until being traded. and on top of that we dont get a linebacker.


id be sad, man


Losing Loadholt is a realistic situation. The Vikings didnt get a deal done and he will be free to test the market. Its no sure thing that he will want to return to MN if another teams offers a decent amount of money. The vikings are in the middle of the pack in terms of cap space and there are several teams with $25+ million to spend. Loadholt is bound to get overpaid on the open market.

I do agree, round 1 is too soon for a RT.
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vikesnewcoach11


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 4:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I added your mock into my thread
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Freakout


Joined: 05 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 12:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vikingsrule wrote:
I am not a fan of Thigpen, what I remember him for when he was younger was the offense having to change to fit his skill set as more of a spread type passer. I would prefer more of a traditionally trained QB. However, Thigpen is more seasoned now than when he was younger, so perhaps he has the tools to play in a traditional offense. Basically, you shouldnt have to change your offense to fit your backup QBs need. You should expect a seamless transition from starter to backup in terms of play calling and schematics.

Rinehart isnt a bad backup option.

Gibson and Knighton are solid free agents to bring in, and should be starters.

I like DJ Moore a lot, he has the tools to be an inside CB and is a good fit for the Cover 2. I believe Moore returns kicks or punts, at least he did in college.

I am not a fan of DJ Fluker in round one. I dont think he will be a RT at the next level and I dont think the Vikings need to spend a first rd pick to fill the void from losing Loadholt. There are plenty of RT options in the 2nd and 3rd rd. I would rather see Fluker play OG at the next level, but even then, I dont think taking an OG is a smart way to go in round one either. I would prefer impact players with that first pick, like a MLB or WR.

I love the Wheaton pick in round 2, he is quickly becoming a top 5 WR in this draft for me.

Gratz is another good pick, great physical tools and athleticism and is a good fit to replace Winfield in the slot.

I dont like Simon. Looking at the type of DEs the Vikings prefer, I would expect more of a 6-4 to 6-5 DE with a long wingspan. Guys like Griffen, Robison and Edwards were all tall and lanky players.

The Williams are nice picks as well.

Overall, this isnt a bad mock. However, your decision to not bring back Brinkley and not find an early round upgrade concerns me. To me, if Brinkley isnt coming back, a MLB will be selected early.

I feel that pick 23 would be better implemented on a MLB if you stick with Wheaton in round 2.


I also disagree with your take on Harvin. If the Vikings dont land a top free agent WR, why does that impact Harvins situation? They play different positions so one really shouldnt affect the other. The Vikings still should consider trading Harvin if they dont land Wallace or Jennings, since neither player would replace Harvin. Jarius Wright would replace Harvin, and he is on the roster regardless. If MN loses out on a top free agent WR, I hope that isnt a reason to overpay for Harvin. How much do you expect Harvin to sign for?


I am not a Thigpen fan and you are right that Kansas City switched their offense to the spread during his lone successful year.

You may be right on Simon. I don't know if they have a certain height preference. I have read Fraizer say they like their DE's weight right around 265 lbs. citing a preference for speed (made the comment last summer when discussing Everson Griffen). I will say despite Simon's height, he still does a good job of dropping back and deflecting passes.

Again I wouldn't want Fluker in the first round. This is just me putting my Spielman hat on. I assume any half way decent tackle will be snatched up fast once free agent signings become official. So the only way to solve that hole is going to be finding one in the draft. You could wait until the 2nd or 3rd round but you are likely to come away with a developmental player. Then it comes down to system fit etc... For a team who's backbone is the power running game, I don't know if Spielman would be comfortable starting the season that way.

I will say I do not really see any difference in mobility between Loadholt and Fluker. I think he will struggle at times in the passing game but he is going to be a beast of a run blocker. The downside is you come away with a road grading guard. While at any other position if the player doesn't workout you come away with nothing.

I agree the linebacker position is far from ideal. Hopefully I will be wrong and we get a new 3 down guy.

The Percy Harvin situation - Trust me when I say I am not trying to be personal. I just believe Spielman values Harvin a little more than you do. Though I could certainly be wrong and will gladly eat crow if I am.

Spielman doesn't come across to me as the type of general manager that is going to be bullied by a disgruntled player. Do I think he would trade him? Absolutely. Do I think he will take an offer lower than what he is asking for in trade? Not at all. I think this is going to be dragged out. There will be a media circus, Harvin will miss most of the off-season activities but shows up for mandatory camps and training camp. Both sides reach an agreement around the beginning of the season.

When I mention replacing Harvin with Jennings or Wallace. I am not talking about his role as a slot receiver. Harvin is responsible for a lot of the teams production even if he isn't the perfect fit. Remove him from the team without adding another reliable receiver and you are really taking the chance of making a step back. I believe people are putting too much faith in the way we performed in those final 4 regular reason games. Peterson's performances helped hide just how inept the passing attack was outside of the Green Bay game.
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vikingsrule


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 12:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The passing offense also had several inept games when Harvin was in the lineup as well. In terms of consistency, there was little to no drop off when Harvin left the lineup. The Vikings had several good passing efforts to close the season, and several bad ones without Harvin. The same could be said when Harvin was in the lineup. We had good games with him and bad games.

Really, the common player in all of this is Christian Ponder. If he is playing well, the Vikings are a formidable team. However, Ponder playing well doesnt seem to be a function of Harvin being in the lineup.

My point is, I think the passing offense without Harvin isnt significantly worse off than it is when Harvin is playing. Bottom line, Ponder is the driver of the passing game. If he is playing well, we saw receivers like Jarius Wright make plays. Give Ponder a couple of outside receivers, I think the receiving corps is good enough.

Perhaps Spielman sees this differently than me, but I dont think I can confidently say Harvin is the solution to the passing game going forward.
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Klomp


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

vikingsrule wrote:
However, your decision to not bring back Brinkley and not find an early round upgrade concerns me. To me, if Brinkley isnt coming back, a MLB will be selected early.


If I may weigh in, remember that Henderson has positional flexibility to play the nickel MIKE. So is a 1st/2nd round linebacker really the best value in that case when they might not be on the field for a majority of the plays?
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Freakout


Joined: 05 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 11, 2013 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Klomp wrote:
vikingsrule wrote:
However, your decision to not bring back Brinkley and not find an early round upgrade concerns me. To me, if Brinkley isnt coming back, a MLB will be selected early.


If I may weigh in, remember that Henderson has positional flexibility to play the nickel MIKE. So is a 1st/2nd round linebacker really the best value in that case when they might not be on the field for a majority of the plays?


That was my thinking. Jasper and Erin jumped around all season as the nickel MIKE beside Greenway. However, that was due in large part to Erin's injuries. Once healthy, at the end of the season, Erin logged the majority of those snaps.

Then when you factor in Spielman never drafting a linebacker before the 5th round, it makes me hesitant to mock a starting MLB high in the draft. Because if Erin is re-signed he will be the starting WLB and most likely the nickel MIKE. I do not like that but I believe the team will share that opinion.

I think it sounds like a Rick Spielman move to draft a mid round MLB and have him and Audie Cole battle it out for the 2 down MLB role. I know Audie Cole has his doubters but where he was drafted shouldn't carry any weight about his abilities. Let us not forget that Erin Henderson went undrafted.
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