The Minnesota Vikings enter the offseason after a Divisional Round loss, so how can they get better using the 2020 NFL Draft?
To begin their playoff run, the Minnesota Vikings got some buzz stirring as they went to the Superdome as the No. 5 seed in the NFC and knocked off the Saints. With Kirk Cousins playing one of the best “big games” of his life, many wondered if Mike Zimmer’s club was set to make a run with their talented roster through the postseason as a dark horse.
Unfortunately for those buying into Skol, the 49ers put a quick end to any of those wonders. Cousins came back down to the Earth in the Divisional Round trip to San Francisco while the Niners defense was dominant and fed off their run game that diced up the Minnesota defense throughout the afternoon.
After a 10-6 regular season and one playoff victory, you certainly wouldn’t say that the Vikings are in a bad spot as they begin the 2020 offseason. However, they are in a tricky spot that puts them in dire need of making a big impact in the 2020 NFL Draft.
The Vikings are currently over the salary cap by about $5.4 million as they enter the offseason, per Over the Cap. While there are a number of contracts they can get off the books, that still leaves them incredibly strapped in terms of free agency. Subsequently, being strong with their draft haul is critical to their sustained success.
As for what Minnesota is looking for in the draft, the needs surprisingly start on defense. Zimmer’s teams have traditionally been known for their play on that side of the ball but that was not the case in the 2019 season. Cornerback emerged as a glaring need but help on the defensive line — on the interior, specifically — was needed as well.
The Vikings offense isn’t perfect either, however. General manager Rick Spielman must continue to improve the offensive line moving forward while also trying to get a little deeper at wide receiver behind Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen.
While Minnesota doesn’t own a fifth-round pick, they have two seventh-round selections and the rest of their own picks to operate with. But what will they do with them? Here’s a look at what they could do with a Vikings 7-round mock draft on the heels of their Divisional Round loss. (Note: This mock was compiled using The Draft Network’s mock draft machine.)