Oct 26, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Golden Gophers defensive lineman Ra

A Minnesota Vikings Complete 2014 NFL Mock Draft


New coaches with a new philosophy are in place for the Minnesota Vikings.  How will it effect this latest 2014 NFL mock draft?

Round 1 – Derek Carr – QB – Fresno State

Unfortunately Khalil Mack and Kony Ealy, who likely would’ve been preferred picks at #8 aren’t available, so the Minnesota Vikings must make a decision.  Do they stick to the plan and take the best defender available or go for the quarterback?  Derek Carr simply has too much upside to pass on.  He’s confident, smart, decisive and displayed just how good his arm is at the Senior Bowl.

Round 2 – Ra’Shede Hageman – DT – Minnesota

The defensive tackle is undoubtedly an athletic wonder at his size but Ra’Shede Hageman doesn’t have the game tape or production to warrant a first round pick.  Not that the Vikings are complaining.  In need of defensive line help, they give Mike Zimmer a young player with perhaps more upside at his position than anybody else in the 2014 class.

Round 3 – Michael Sam – DE – Missouri

Jared Allen and Everson Griffen are free agents in March.  Minnesota can’t ignore the defensive end position for very long.  Unlike his teammate Kony Ealy, Missouri end Michael Sam doesn’t have the preferred length of a classic end but there is no denying he is an active pass rusher who gets good pad level and has the speed and strength required.

Round 3 (from SEA) – Jaylen Watkins – CB – Florida

With teammates Roberson and Purifoy hogging the spotlight, it’s easy to overlook how promising cornerback Jaylen Watkins is coming out of Florida.  Like his brother, Sammy Watkins, he boasts plenty of athletic, good height and length and showed on several occasions he can stick to receivers and play the football in the air.

Round 4 – Brandon Thomas – OG – Clemson

The guard position definitely needs some attention for the Minnesota Vikings.  Brandon Thomas is a name that didn’t surface until recently but the massive lineman out of Clemson is one of those rare types that has the size and strength for guard but the remarkably nimble feed to bump outside to tackle.

Round 5 – Adrian Hubbard – OLB – Alabama

Mike Zimmer has a knack for getting the most out of underachievers and Adrian Hubbard is a perfect project.  Physically, the Alabama outside linebacker has lots of potential but for whatever reason he can’t seem to put it all together.  He’s sort of a jack-of-all-trades, able to do a bunch of things well but nothing great.  Time under Zimmer might change that.

Round 6 – Isaiah Lewis – SS – Michigan State

Getting somebody at safety to compliment Harrison Smith would be really nice for the Vikings.  It may be late in the draft but Isaiah Lewis can do that job.  He ably played strong safety for the best defense in college football at MichiganState.  Tackling is a strength of his game and though undersized he finds ways to contribute in coverage.

Round 7 – Marcus Lucas – WR – Missouri

Throwing the ball isn’t the primary strength for Missouri but that didn’t stop them from fielding a pair of twin towards at the receiver position.  Marcus Lucas is the lesser known of the tandem.  At 6’5″, 220 lbs he is a monstrous target with deceptive speed.  His production is misleading.  Minnesota would be lucky to get him this late.

Tags: 2014 Nfl Mock Draft Derek Carr Featured Michael Sam Minnesota Vikings Popular Ra'shede Hageman

  • Don

    Started off bad, but went better than expected. How is Kony Ealy gone though? Bridgewater, Manziel, Bortles, Mack, Barr, Clowney, Matthews, Robinson, Watkins. Two of these guys are still on the board at 8. It won’t be a lineman.

    • Erik Lambert

      Khalil Mack doesn’t have the size to play defensive end despite his pass rush skill, and I don’t see him being there anyway. Clowney will go in the top five. I have Ealy going to Tampa Bay the pick before you and Barr to the Falcons. Frankly you just paid your right tackle to stay and don’t need a wide receiver. That is why I had them take Carr.

      • Don Andrew Halvorson

        Vikes big board has Teddy, Manziel, Bortles, Barr, Mack. With the two O linemen available, Atlanta and St Louis will bite. Sammy Watkins is also gone. The Vikings make bank trading back if these aren’t true. Carr is wrong unless we trade back.

        • Erik Lambert

          Trade back with who, Don? The only team within striking distance that MIGHT move up is the Jets at #18 and the only player they would likely jump that far up for is Watkins, whom you say will be gone. Also, you assume Carr will be there in a move back but how far? Don’t forget the Titans are sitting there at #11 and it’s not like they’re sold on Locker. Carr would be the perfect competition Whisenhunt eluded to.

          • Don Andrew Halvorson

            Just about every team has a reason to trade up. Baltimore (WR), New York Jets (WR/TE), Pittsburgh (OL), NYG (LB/CB), Detroit (WR), Tennessee (WR/CB), Green Bay (TE/CB), Dallas (BPA), St Louis (WR).

          • Erik Lambert

            There is a big difference between having a reason and a means to trade up. Baltimore has just four picks, Pittsburgh has six, Tennessee has six as do the Giants and Lions. Green Bay is way too far back at #21 and they have only seven. As for St. Louis they almost certainly will try to trade back from #2 which will get them extra selections but if Watkins is off the board before you then I doubt they’ll have reason to move back up from #13 when they could easily use those extra selections to bolster their entire roster, including wide receiver.

          • Don Andrew Halvorson

            Future draft picks and player for pick are options. Greg Robinson is reason enough for St Louis to move up if they have that many picks. Furthermore, compensatory picks are still happening with the teams you’ve listed likely to get at least one or two picks.

          • Erik Lambert

            Not if they take Jake Matthews before that, which I believe they will. It’s true that future and compensatory picks may increase maneuverability but I doubt by much. Let’s break it down. Baltimore, even with comps won’t get beyond their original total of seven selections and Ozzie Newsome rarely if ever trades up in the first round. The Jets are probably the best options with an extra third and maybe four comps coming their way but if Watkins is off the board I think they may wait a little longer before moving up to get Marqise Lee or Eric Ebron. Pittsburgh could get a few but they need secondary help more than offensive line and most mock draft projections have the top corners and safeties going between 10 and 20. Tennessee could be enticed to move up for a quarterback but if it’s Derek Carr is he really worth the extra currency or will they risk you guys taking him? I’d bet on the latter. Green Bay is never that aggressive in the first round and St. Louis could easily wait for Mike Evans or Ha’Sean Clinton-Dix at #13 of which both are expected to still be on the board.

          • Don Andrew Halvorson

            I’m saying St Louis takes Sammy Watkins and Greg Robinson.

          • Erik Lambert

            Will they really take another smaller, fast receiver so soon after getting Tavon Austin? I’d surmise they prefer a bigger target for the red zone, especially against those bigger defensive backs in the NFC West. I believe they go Jake Matthews and Clinton-Dix in the first and grab the big receiver later.

  • Paul

    I agree with your rounds 3-7 picks, but hate your pick of Carr in the 1st. Flip that around, pick up the best DT/NT on the board in the 1st, then grab AJ McCarron at the top of Rd 2. He’ll be a much better QB than Carr and won’t come in with the super high expectations that a #8 overall pick will as a QB, he won’t be a reach at the top of round 2 and he’s a good QB from a winning program with 5 years of college experience against top tier competition. The numbers these other QB’s put up against super weak competition is a joke, Carr will flame out just like his brother. Period.

    • Erik Lambert

      Carr won’t be there in the second round. Hageman on the other hand is a steal at that position so the value you get is outstanding. McCarron to me is no better than Carr when it comes to handling pressure. Carr has the best arm and better athleticism. It’s easy to say he’ll flame out because of what happened to his brother but they aren’t the same person.

      • Paul

        I don’t think Carr is his brother, but I also don’t think he’s an NFL caliber QB especially a 1st round talent, he’s not ready. He is over-hyped and puts up crazy numbers solely on the low level of competition he played against. McCarron isn’t a 1st round talent to most people, but he is definitely NFL ready having played against great competition in an excellent program for 5 years. He’s mature enough, smart enough, has a good enough arm to make most of the throws (though not a rocket arm), has good footwork, and makes good decisions. Carr will flame out simply because he won’t be able to adjust to the level of speed and competition in the NFL, he will be tossed into the fire too quickly and get skittish, make poor decisions and try too hard to rely on his athleticism to get him out of it, which won’t work against the best of the best in the NFL.

        • Erik Lambert

          Nobody said he had to start right away. Zimmer could easily start Ponder or Cassel the first year, let Carr learn the offense and then debut him in 2015. Everyone likes to point out he didn’t play great competition. I like to respond that he didn’t play with the greatest talent around him either. Yes, he’ll see more talented defenses in the pros but he’ll also have better teammates too..

          • Paul

            That’s the problem though. Most of these rookies are tossed into the fire because the fan base becomes rabid and wants to see what they got before the rookie is truly ready to go in. I hope that they let Ponder go and keep Cassel as he was the better QB for them, but I really hope they don’t make the mistake of grabbing Carr in the first round. I’m saying he is just not ready, he’d be a project that’d take 2-3 years to get into NFL form and would be a mediocre QB at best rated in the bottom third in the league, whereas McCarron could probably start year 1 or 2 for them and be a solid QB able to manage the game very well and make defenses pay if they stack the box on AP. None of these guys in the draft this year are “sure fire” though except for maybe Bridgewater, and he’ll have a tough time going to a bad team at the top of the draft anyhow. Mostly this will depend on the system that Zimmer and Turner implement, so it may all be a moot point by draft day.

  • 3kolu

    After watching Senior Bowl week, Carr looked the part. I don’t think Hagemann will be there in round 2. Sam’s is a 1 year production guy, I’d rather land one of those monster corners in Jean-Baptiste, McGill or Desir. I’m thinking Sherman-like. Watkins is scrappy though. Brandon Thomas would be a nice addition. Hubbard seems bound for mediocrity. The film on Lewis is solid and Lucas at #7 wouldn’t be too bad.

    • Erik Lambert

      Hageman will really be decided in the middle of the first round with Dallas and Chicago. If neither of them take him, I’m not sure who will pick him up until the second. Aaron Donald is threatening and there is always the presence of Louis Nix and Timmy Jernigan.

      • 3kolu

        I love Hagemann, Nix would fit well, but he’s gone in the 1st, Stephon Tuitt has versatility and size but there are concerns about his motor . Also, do the Vikings resign K Will and/or Fred Evans? Do they go after Joseph, Melton or Raji? K Will dominated at NT when the Vikes moved him over. With, Zimmer at the helm, I’m convinced they will be patient and methodical.

  • gagu

    I will defer to others here if they know better than I, but I wonder if Hageman is the right fit, considering he would be paired with Floyd. Erik Lambert sounds right to me in liking Nix or Jernigan. I also read an article ealier that said Sam is a better 3-4 fit. In any case, I´m not a than of taking Carr at 8. If a guy like Watkins should fall, I wouldn´t pass on him because we are OK at that position. If he is as good as many say, the likely impact is more than worth it.

    • Erik Lambert

      Hageman projects as a great interior pass rusher, but that negates how big and strong he actually is, which is why he’s a better run defender at this point. He could easily play next to Floyd. Many see Sam as a 3-4 but people overlook his bulk and adequate weight. That should allow him to hold up against the run.

      As for Watkins, who will throw to him? It’s been established Ponder will never get you guys far. Freeman? He’s a loafer. Cassel? Played well enough but he’s getting up there in age and will have to learn another new offense. I truly don’t think the people down on Carr are doing their homework. They’re basing their opinions on recent trends like his loss to USC or the fact his brother flamed out as a starter, one of which wasn’t completely his fault and the other which has no bearing on his career. Derek has the size, arm strength, accuracy and athleticism. All he needs is the commitment from a team.

      • gagu

        Points taken on Hageman and Sam. As to Watkins, the Vikes went to 4 super Bowls and at least two NFC championships behind QB´s that they had acquired vía other means than the draft. Tarkington was re-acquired. Carr is the 4th rated QB coming out. He doesn´t project to franchise status. Reaching for him at 8 when there is a potential superstar playmaker available in Watkins is shortsighted. Almost like Arizona taking Levi Brown in 2007 over AD because they already had Edgerrin James, a RB entering his 10 and last full NFL season. There is room for Watkins day one, and he could be an impact player for a decade. Carr hopefully has the credentials to be a good QB, but his ceiling, at this point, is something like a Flacco, not a Luck. He has the potential of being a Bowl winning QB, but will he ever have the stuff to carry a team? There isn´t a QB at all in this year´s group who is generally regarded in the elite range of Luck and Griffen when they came out. And Carr is the fourth rated of this lower group. This year´s group is deep, without the studs at the top. Take the suburb talent available at 8 this year, draft one of the boom/bust guys in the second round. If it doesn’t work out, the Vikes will have a strong WR corps to maybe attract a solid FA QB next year, or maybe find a way to get one of the studs in next years draft. Other option, trade down and get another early pick, and still get Carr.

        • Erik Lambert

          I hate to point this out, gagu, but did they win any of those Super Bowls? I fully understand Watkins is a playmaker, but I also understand the chance to land a quarterback with the physical skillset of Carr is also rare. Is he a finished product? No. However, I feel he could have a much greater impact on the franchise. The Vikings already have Greg Jennings and invested a first rounder in Cordarrelle Patterson last year. He’s your future playmaker. Sacrificing an opportunity to get a passer with the arm and athleticism of Carr, regardless of his rawness is what is shortsighted. It’s nice that you points out Flacco because the last time I checked, he has a ring. Luck, for all his skill, does not. At least not yet anyway. Besides, I don’t feel Carr is getting past Tennessee at #11, so if you think Detroit or Buffalo will sacrifice a pick to move ahead, fine, otherwise you’re sacrificing the chance to get Carr. Then who do you have? I would say Jimmy Garoppolo is your best hope in the second round. A.J. McCarron? Zach Mettenberger? Aaron Murray? David Fales? All have nice perks but also glaring problems with their game. Carr’s biggest issues are correctable, and in this day and age, finding a playmaking receiver isn’t as hard as it once was.

          • gagu

            Erik, that´s nonsense. I can´t get over how otherwisw intelligent people assign failure to a team that gets to 4 Super Bowls in decade, win or lose.
            I have based my argument from the beginning on Watkins being a specdial talent, more tan just a playmaker, an impact player for a decade. That´s how some are describing him. As with Carr, the Combine is going to alter a lot of thinking about many players, Carr certainly not the least. As of today, Watkins is a potential Swann, Carris a potential Flacco. As I said before, Carr´s ceiling is like Flacco, a player who, with a strong team, can win a ring. In this line of thought, I´ll take the WR with a superstar ceiling over a potential quality but not star QB. BTW: Are you saying that you´d take Flacco over Luck? Seriously?
            Here is where we agree completely: If Carr continues to turn heads in the next 2 months, which I think you are pretty confident he will, then I say take him over any one. Pray that he makes it to eight. If his skillset proves rare, with no uncorrectable flaws, he will be a Godsend. I hope you´re right.

          • Erik Lambert

            That’s not insinuating that those were bad teams, gagu. They were great teams. But if we all agree that the stipulation for every team is winning, then under that rule they were ultimately failures.

            Watkins is a special talent but the last time I checked wide receivers don’t win Super Bowls. It’s easy for you to assume you can play the wait-and-see approach on the quarterback front but you’re overlooking one key factor. The new head coach is a defensive specialist. Unless he has a deep understanding of offense that I’m not aware of, then it’s unlikely the Vikings will build their core around a quarterback. So the better bet for them is to get one with talent while they have the opportunity because this plan to grab a “stud” almost never works unless your teams decides to phone in a season for a top five pick.

            As for the Flacco question. Here is what I know. Luck has the advantage in physical talent. That much is clear. Here’s something else I know. In just two years of playoff football he has amassed eight interceptions. That is the exact same number as Flacco has had in five playoff trips. He’s careless with the football and has a bad tendency to fall behind too often. Flacco is a winner and has a ring. Now if we’re talking straight up, I would take Luck for the simple reason he the younger, more physically gifted prospect with a larger window of opportunity. But if they were the same age, Flacco just seems to play better when it matters most.

          • gagu

            I guess we have different perspectives of failure .A point that is especially fitting this Super Bowl weekend is that the 70′s Vikes were outdoor team playing warmer weather teams at warm venues in January. They also ran into 3 extrordinarily great teams in the Dolphins, Steerlers and Raiders in those particular years. No excuse for the first loss to the Chiefs. I can surely talk about the frustration of living through those losses, but I also look back at a whole lot of excitement and happiness. Believe it or not, the 70´s were a great decade to be a Vikes fan. In 8 seasons, ´69 to´76, they went 87-24-1, and 8-3 in playoff games leading up to the Bowls. In ’71 and ’77, the lost in the playoffs to Dallas, the eventual champs. That is success in a very reasonable sense. Your failure definition is a slippery slope. Taken to a logical conclusion, the cliché is that there are 31 failures each season. But why stop at seasons? Seems to me, this argument could apply next to decades. The Steelers didn´t even make it to 6 Super Bowls in the ’70, so despite their 4 wins, they were ultimate failures most years. And the Bucs are a better franchise than the Vikes because they had that one big year, ´02, to go with years of ineptitude. And Brad Johnson was an ultimate success with his ring, where Tarkington was a failure. I´m not buying it.
            Here´s where the Flacco question matters in my argument. Imagine clones of them coming out this year. Lets say that we are confident and ultimately correct in our assessment of their talents. You have an average team in all respects, average defense and offense and you do need a QB. Who would you take? Luck came to a 2-14 team and went 11-5 in each of his first two seasons. He lost his fist playoff game to the eventual champs, led by Flacco. This year Indy split in post-season, Luck sure made mistakes, but they did put of 67 points in the two games. Flacco has been good and steady, but he also has clearly played with a better crew of players. I think the upside for Luck is terrific. His rings will come.
            My main interest here is Carr. I want to be sold on him as something more than the next Tommy Kramer. I´d be more than happy if he ends up profiling to a likely equivilent of Flacco. I haven´t bought in to that yet.
            But I do appreciate the back and forth, and I´m going to take a much stronger look at Carr. I consider his bloodline a big positive.I hope he forces his way up to a top 10 value. That can only be good for the future of the Vikings.

          • Erik Lambert

            Agreed. Remember though that selecting Carr is just the first step. Then it’s up to Zimmer to put a good offensive staff around him and hopefully stay committed to adding quality talent rather than focusing just on the defense.

          • kyle

            In all honesty best bet would be to trade down to 10, take Carr and never look back. Carr has correctable flaws and we have needs all over the board including OG, CB, LB, DT and a 3rd down RB. Would Mack, Moseley or Barr look good in purple and gold? Of course. But we have no bigger glaring need than quarterback. Even if he can perform at a level of Trent Differ in ’00-01 when the ravens won the super bowl. Zimmer will build his defense from the middle out and all we need is a quarterback to make the defense pay when they stack the box against Adrian.

            If you paid attention to the Senior Bowl practices, Carr was the only quarterback letting the ball rip through the wind with accuracy and velocity. That’s also an important factor since we’ll be outdoors for at least two years til the new stadium is built. People want to bash Carr, but he was in a pro style offense for two years (I believe) and was forced to learn a spread scheme. Say what you want about Derek Carr, but he is, by no means, his brother. On a side note, level of competition faced in college isn’t that great of a determining factor whether a quarterback can hack it in the NFL. Look at Kaepernick, for example. He came out of Nevada and they didn’t face SEC competition. Don’t judge a book by its cover.

  • 3kolu

    I really like the film on Ryan Mallett, also he’s been Tom Brady’s understudy like Rodgers was under Favre. Mallett has a cannon for an arm, great size, and decent accuracy. He’s also been tied in to the Vikings coaching staff and he played with current Viking WR’s Jairus Wright and Greg Childs.

  • Justin Huffman

    A few things. I like the Carr pick, cannon arm, quick release, definitely smart and heard he has a huge work ethic; things a QB will need to succeed. Issues his footwork and pocket presence, things that good coaching can fix. I like him. Anyone who says Carr is overrated and blah blah needs to go watch film. Just because he plays lesser talent doesn’t mean his throws aren’t pin point accurate or he can throw a deep ball like its nothing, his fade routes are a thing to watch, he’s precise on those. I don’t like the analysis on Ealy, he is not a top ten pick and not a player who would fit in the vikings scheme neither would Mack or Barr, they are 3-4 backers not 4-3 and it seems the Vikes will stick to the 4-3. Secondly Hageman will not be there in the 2nd and why would we draft him? he plays the 3 technique like Floyd and we already have Floyd. 3rd round Someone like Keith McGill or Stanley Jean Baptiste would be more ideal to go with Rhodes over Watkins and another 3-4 player in Sam. Gotta understand scheme and where they fit before just throwing names out there.

  • Jason Brandt

    Vikings should be able to draft a solid defender in the 1st. But I really hope they can trade with another team and take a later pick of Carr and get another 2nd 3rd rounder or both plus Sam is too small. A tweener hopeful for a DB or LB instead