With the 2022 NFL Draft in the books, the time has come for grades and reactions.
We’ve compiled the opinions of several experts on how the Minnesota Vikings performed in this year’s draft, which kicked off with a trade with the Detroit Lions.
This was Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s first draft as the general manager of the Vikings, and the first for many in the front office.
Here’s the experts’ takes on the picks:
Rob Rang, FoxSports.com
Grade: C +
“In terms of addressing the team’s biggest need, few clubs more emphatically checked boxes in the 2022 NFL Draft than the Vikings. And while that speaks to the potential new general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell have to work with , it still ranks the Vikings fourth in a superbly drafting NFC North division.
The Vikings surrendered 34 touchdowns through the air a year ago while collecting just seven interceptions. That abysmal touchdown-to-interception ratio all but sealed defensive-minded head coach Mike Zimmer’s fate. The Vikings look to greatly improve those numbers in 2022, with the hard-hitting Lewis Cine at safety and cornerback Andrew Booth (a steal at No. 42, in my opinion) atop their rookie class. “
Nate Davis, USA Today
New GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s first draft was short on sex appeal but arguably just what the Vikes needed. Perfectly content to swing trades with the division-rival Packers and Lions, Adofo-Mensah worked the board on the way to adding S Lewis Cine , CB Andrew Booth, G Ed Ingram, and LB Brian Asamoah in the first 66 picks. All project as opening-day starters, especially important for a Minnesota defense that consistently betrayed this offense in recent seasons. “
Mel Kiper Jr., ESPN
“Adofo-Mensah’s first draft in Minnesota featured some wheeling and dealing, as he made trades with rival Lions (which I liked) and Packers (which I didn’t love). The result was two potential starters in the secondary in Lewis Cine (32), a versatile and thumping safety, and cornerback Andrew Booth, Jr. (42), who was a little inconsistent last season.The Vikings reached to try to fill a starting guard spot with Ed Ingram (59); I thought his strength and mobility was worth an early Day 3 pick. Brian Asamoah (66) is a fun but undersized inside linebacker who will fit their scheme. “
Mark Maske, Washington Post
“The Vikings traded down from No. 12 in the first round and emerged with a deep class that perhaps lacks difference-makers. They certainly improved their secondary by taking S Lewis Cine to close the first round and getting CB Andrew Booth in the second. “
Eric Edholm, Yahoo Sports
“The Vikings didn’t come away with a top-20 player in this draft class, but they wound up adding a ton of depth, which now that a new regime has taken over, getting your own guys in the locker room can be valuable We’ll never know exactly why Adofo-Mensah traded down six times, maybe his preferred pick kept getting taken before the Vikes were on the clock, but once you look back at their draft class, they added a lot of defensive pieces who could become starters in short order. “
Doug Farrar and Michael Schofield, TD Wire (USA TODAY Sports)
“The Vikings agreed to move from 12 to 32 in a trade with the Lions, and still got the second-best safety in this draft class in Lewis Cine. Cine is a hammerhead downhill safety with violent intentions and the range and athleticism to win all And in Andrew Booth, Minnesota gets what it desperately needed – a legitimate cornerback who can play off and press, and has the range to match with NFL receivers.LSU’s Ed Ingram is an underrated, butt-kicking pulling guard who will fill another huge need, and Brian Asamoah has the traits to make his name as the kind of three-down ‘backer the Vikings have expertly cultivated over time. Watch out for Illinois tackle Vederian Lowe, who somehow lasted to the [sixth] round, and gave George Karlaftis all he could handle when he was on point last season. In that they were able to grab extra picks and still refill a really bad secondary, this draft appears to be a success. ”
Chad Reuter, NFL.com
“The Vikings did a nice job grabbing draft picks in trades with desperate division rivals Detroit and Green Bay. The secondary needed help and it got two immediate contributors in Cine and Booth, who would have been a first-rounder if not for injuries. Ingram’s a likely future starter inside and Asamoah is the ball-hunter the Vikings needed in their new 3-4 scheme. “
Conor Orr, Sports Illustrated
“We spent a lot of time rightfully hearing about Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, who comes to Minnesota with great promise as the kind of executive who can finally bridge the gap between analytics and personnel. But for a team with a few expressed needs, it’s hard to stomach dropping from pick No. 12 to pick No. 32 and not netting more of a return.There were a handful of premium players remaining in the first round at the time of Minnesota’s first selection, and instead they dropped back and replenished the secondary with a handful of players who may be slightly less talented than the ones they could have gotten if they stayed at 12. Booth is a gem in this class and feels a little underrated.While the physicality he flashed in college was against ACC wide receivers, he has the hand-fighting skills that should translate quickly in the NFC North against some physical pass catchers. “
Vinnie Iyer, Sporting News
“The Vikings do get knocked a little for making multiple intradivision trades to help the Packers and Lions, but otherwise GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah had a good first draft to help his fellow rookie, Coach Kevin O’Connell. Cine and Booth are great complementary players to their secondary and can learn well from Harrison Smith and Patrick Peterson.They threw it back to load up on welcome revamped defensive depth at every level.Ingram also has a good chance to start somewhere inside for the offense. [Ty] Chandler, [Jalen] Nailor and [Nick] Muse are good bottom-roster offensive skill adds. “
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