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Vikings choosing between Blackmon, Claiborne and Kalil with third pick

3-minnesota-vikings-matt-kalil-ot-usc-77-experts-agree Getty Images

There are three names up for consideration as the third overall pick for the Vikings next Thursday night.

General manager Rick Spielman said at a press conference Thursday that the team will choose between Oklahoma State wide receiver Justin Blackmon, LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne and USC T Matt Kalil. Spielman, via Jeremy Fowler of the Pioneer Press, said that the front office has given all three players equal grades and they are now sifting between them to figure out which one will be on the card they hand to Roger Goodell.

“What you’re saying is, ‘All these guys have equal ability. What do you want? Do you want the receiver? Do you want the tackle? Do you want the corner?'”

Now comes the part where we insert the standard proviso that there’s a chance the team could trade the pick. Spielman said he’s received offers, but that he will wait to see what develops on draft night before making any final decisions on that front. And we’ll follow that up with the standard proviso that Spielman could know which of the three the Vikings will take and is using the perception of indecision to solicit better offers than he’s already heard from a team that is dead set on one of those three players.

You could insert those statements after just about everything a general manager says between now and the moment their pick is announced. Welcome to draft week.

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65 Responses to “Vikings choosing between Blackmon, Claiborne and Kalil with third pick”
  1. trbowman says: Apr 19, 2012 4:23 PM

    Blackmon is not a top ten talent.

  2. bigjdve says: Apr 19, 2012 4:24 PM

    Sounds like they are willing to trade with anyone that isn’t Cleveland, by suggesting that they want their player.

  3. thankheavenfornumberseven says: Apr 19, 2012 4:25 PM

    They already know who they want; they’re just trying to get somebody to trade up with them.

  4. wipackman1265 says: Apr 19, 2012 4:25 PM

    I believe every word he says

    LA Vikings select ……………………….

  5. geniusesq says: Apr 19, 2012 4:29 PM

    If they don’t take Kalil, they must hate Ponder.

  6. nyyjetsknicks says: Apr 19, 2012 4:30 PM

    We already knew this…

  7. fran021 says: Apr 19, 2012 4:30 PM

    Vikings choosing between Blackmon, Claiborne and Kalil with third pick
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    You choose “between” TWO…you choose AMONG three.

  8. 69jaredallen69 says: Apr 19, 2012 4:31 PM

    Blackmon has no business going #3…he is no Fitz, Andre Johnson, Megatron or even AJ Green. If Spieldope drafts him at 3 he will be unemployed and working for Florio in 2 years

  9. ninefingers9 says: Apr 19, 2012 4:32 PM

    With the 3rd overall pick, in the 2012 NFL draft…The Minnesota Vikings select…Randy Mo, er…Justin Blackmon!

  10. sillychrizzy says: Apr 19, 2012 4:32 PM

    that’s quite a situation!

  11. cali49er707 says: Apr 19, 2012 4:33 PM

    they should draft kalil, he might stir up some good PR when the kid who went to USC returns back home, since they are going to move to LA

  12. stavreafavre says: Apr 19, 2012 4:33 PM

    “With the third pick of the NFL Draft, the Minnesota Vikings select Majustis Claililmon!”

  13. 2dollarpbrs says: Apr 19, 2012 4:34 PM

    I feel sorry for whoever goes to Minny

  14. billybatty says: Apr 19, 2012 4:34 PM

    Blackmon will fill more seats in L.A. than the tackle or corner.

  15. cardiovascularendurance says: Apr 19, 2012 4:59 PM

    You choose the tackle. That should be pretty obvious.

  16. deakontke says: Apr 19, 2012 5:00 PM

    Whichever of those three that they get will be a good pick….but I would bet that they end up picking at #5 with the Bucs leap-frogging the Browns for Richardson.

  17. minnyfan4life says: Apr 19, 2012 5:02 PM

    I’ve given Speilman a lot of rope and tried to stay patient this offseason and trust that by not going after big named players and building through the draft that he’s doing the right thing but if he doesn’t draft Kalil I don’t know if my patience will last that much longer. Draft Kalil and move on to the next pick.

  18. purplehayseuss says: Apr 19, 2012 5:03 PM

    “Welcome to draft week”

    My grandpa used to say, “I know that place….I spent a week there one night.”

    He also said, “I know that guy…we went to different schools together.”

    My grandpa was a truck driver and a Saint. He never had to disinform anyone or pass off tactical intent as factual.

    His mission was to make his 6-year old grandson smile.

  19. edavidberg says: Apr 19, 2012 5:04 PM

    I think they’re crazy if they don’t take Kalil. Bookend tackles have a low bust rate when they’re as highly thought of as Kalil and they’re arguably the most valuable position on a team. You can’t win a Super Bowl without a good offensive line.

  20. realdealsteel says: Apr 19, 2012 5:06 PM

    Vikings are ran stupidly. That’s why their where they are in the draft.

    Whatever they do, it will be the wrong thing because that’s what perennial losers do.

  21. trollhammer20 says: Apr 19, 2012 5:10 PM

    Having a stud WR does no good if the QB is flat on his back because the LT whiffed a block.

    Take Kalil now, and find the WR later. Your QB play will be much better over the next decade with a stud LT in place.

  22. infectorman says: Apr 19, 2012 5:10 PM

    fran021 says: Apr 19, 2012 4:30 PM

    Vikings choosing between Blackmon, Claiborne and Kalil with third pick
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    You choose “between” TWO…you choose AMONG three.
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

    “Journalism’s kinda scary
    and of it we should be wary”

    FZ- Joes Garage

    The standards for “Journalists” have fallen to alarming levels!
    Poor Josh Alper; having to suffer the slings and arrows of every armchair English professor with a mouse, keyboard and broadband connection.

    Plus he probably has to suck up to that hack Florio every day:
    Josh, get me a coffee!
    Josh, shine my shoes!
    Josh, fashion me a story on Tim Tebow, Rex Ryan or Peyton Manning NOW! Chop Chop!!
    We haven’t posted one in almost 71/2 minutes! Sheeesshhh!

  23. diehardtwinsfan says: Apr 19, 2012 5:14 PM

    This really should be Kalil, unless they thing Reif is just as good, at which point you convince somone that needs a QB to overpay and move up to 3… If the browns really want Tannehil, then perhaps they can extort another pick out of cleveland to swap first rounders.

  24. zn0rseman says: Apr 19, 2012 5:14 PM

    Floyd > Blackmon

  25. billhicks666 says: Apr 19, 2012 5:15 PM

    Oh. Wow. Thanks for the news bulletin.

  26. bwareromo says: Apr 19, 2012 5:22 PM

    I can only wish some how Jerrah can wheel a trade to get to this spot and take Kalil, this guy would actually give the cowboys a legit oline.

  27. subzero00 says: Apr 19, 2012 5:26 PM

    As a Vikes fan I hope to pick Kalil. If not Kalil then Claiborne. If not Claiborn then Blackmon. If not Blackmon ah never mind I don’t care my squad is gone! Go Lions!

  28. billjaehne says: Apr 19, 2012 5:26 PM

    trade the 3rd pick and a 2nd and 4th to bengals for both of there first round picks

  29. hrmlss says: Apr 19, 2012 5:26 PM

    Whoever they pick will suck. Should just avoid picking for 10 or so picks like they usually do.

  30. im2fast4you123 says: Apr 19, 2012 5:27 PM

    If they trade down the need to get floyd. If they want to be dumb and take it receiver at 3 then take floyd. He is better then blackman. Floyd is not rated higher then blackman because of off the field issues. Blackman only had a great career at OK because of their pass first offense. Floyd has great talent. As much as i would love to get kalil at 3 i wouldn’t mind trading down to get floyd and takin a tackle later. Anything is an upgrade from charlie johnson. It is proven you dont need an elite tackle to win games. A serviceable one will do.

  31. purplecrowe says: Apr 19, 2012 5:29 PM

    The best player of the three is easily Claiborne, he should be the pick. I like Blackmon and Kalil, but neither are anywhere near #3 worthy…

    Round 1) Morris Claiborne – CB LSU
    Round 2) Harrison Smith – S ND
    Round 3) Marvin McNutt – WR Iowa

    make it happen Rick, puh-leeze…

  32. vikesfansteve says: Apr 19, 2012 5:34 PM

    Claiborne or Kalil are both good picks.

  33. contra74 says: Apr 19, 2012 5:34 PM

    The interesting thing is that they need help in the positions those players play. I think there is more return on investment by drafting Blackmon as it will help free up Percy Harvin to do more damage in the slot. Claiborne would be next as everyone knows the secondary is struggling. Kalil would be nice but then again there are other tackles in the draft.

  34. mooreman338 says: Apr 19, 2012 5:34 PM

    What good would Blackmon do the Vikings when the QB is getting hit before the WR is finished running his route? Take Kalil before Blackmon. Only take Claiborne if you think you can get a solid tackle in another round. It really doesn’t matter how good your coverage is in this day and age, its all setup for offense. You need to throw and you need time to do it.

  35. kowboydmac says: Apr 19, 2012 5:40 PM

    The worst part about those three choices, is that they are positions in which you can find quality starters in lower rounds.

    That being said, I believe Kalil has the makings of a franchise LT. Franchise being the key word, as those are far and few between.

    Same goes for Blackmon and Claiborne. Are they franchise quality, or just very good? You can find “very good” in the 2-4th round, with the gems being in rounds 5-7.

    Pretty sure they can get Kalil, a starting WR and a solid CB in rounds 1-3, in that order.

  36. garyman1 says: Apr 19, 2012 5:49 PM

    Am a big believer in building up both your offensive and defensive lines. They are the guys that dictate how tough your team is and you can never have enough studs there.
    Take Kalil (Which would also help protect your number one pick from last year)

  37. billhicks666 says: Apr 19, 2012 5:59 PM

    purplecrowe says:

    “The best player of the three is easily Claiborne, he should be the pick….”

    Whether Claiborne is the best player of the three or not is irrelevant. Minnesota runs a Cover-2 defense, and Claiborne is not the kind of corner you want in a Cover-2. Because of this, I think Minnesota would be best off taking Kalil and providing Ponder with a blind-side protector for at least the next five years or so.

  38. vikemike257 says: Apr 19, 2012 6:00 PM

    They must take Kalil, Claiborne is an elite talent, but when you run a cover 2 scheme, you don’t draft CBs at #3, and Blackmon is a smaller version or Anquan Boldin (good but not top 5 good)

  39. jwreck says: Apr 19, 2012 6:03 PM

    purplecrowe says: Apr 19, 2012 5:29 PM

    The best player of the three is easily Claiborne, he should be the pick. I like Blackmon and Kalil, but neither are anywhere near #3 worthy…
    ________________

    Are you joking? Claiborne is a once a year player. He’s going to be very good, but he will not be special. He’s not even the best cornerback to come out of LSU in the last two years. Patrick Peterson was a much better prospect, will make a much better player once he develops, and he was drafted at number five overall for a reason.

    A cornerback hasn’t been drafted with the third pick in the draft since 1997, and while Shawn Springs was a very good player, I don’t think anyone who was in the Seahawks front office back then would regard using the number three pick on a defensive back as a great move.

    Matt Kalil, on the other hand, is one of the best left tackles to enter the NFL draft in years. If there were no major quarterback needs in the league this year, Kalil would be the easy, consensus choice for whichever team held the number one pick. Kalil has been described as the best left tackle to enter the draft since Joe Thomas, who was drafted at number 3 overall, so yeah, I don’t think it would be a stretch to describe him as “near #3 worthy…”

  40. fkajames says: Apr 19, 2012 6:04 PM

    If the Vikings continue to play Cover-2, they don’t need Claiborne. I agree with the poster that says LTs don’t have to be elite, but because of the new rookie salary structure, you’re not paying them elite dollars like you did in the past. Take Kalil, sign him for 5, then give him big $ for the next 5 and you don’t have a LT problem until 2022 (barring injury).

  41. theytukrjobs says: Apr 19, 2012 6:05 PM

    Anyone who dismisses Blackmon obviously didn’t spend much time watching college football. He’s really, really good. He plays fast and is a beast to tackle. He makes cuts before catching the ball and at times seems on another level. He was so amazing in their bowl game even though he was playing hobbled.

    Vikings would get absolutely ripped on if they took Blackmon, but it isn’t that bad of a pick. Kalil is the best available and they could use a good tackle but the best teams in the NFL don’t draft tackles in the lottery, and speilman has to know that.

  42. jsrdc says: Apr 19, 2012 6:07 PM

    What a problem to have. Choosing between three very talented players. I think it does boil down to Kalil and Claiborne. Blackmon is good, but he doesn’t get picked at three, IMO. Claiborne and Kalil are easily the best at their respective positions. It is debatable with regards to Blackmon.

  43. calbsure says: Apr 19, 2012 6:09 PM

    He will not go Claiborne, he signed to many CB’s in FA, Cook is coming back and Cover 2 doesn’t require shut down type corners even though it would be a plus. He will not go Blackmon, they have repeatedly said they need to have someone stretch the field, although Blackmon is a excellent prospect, he doesn’t have the elite speed. This leaves Kalil or a trade down. Kalil improves the OL , run game, passing game and safest choice for Spielmen’s rebuilding project and job security. Unless, he gets a Redskin type offer and there isn’t any Snyder ran teams left out there.

  44. flannlv says: Apr 19, 2012 6:11 PM

    With the 3rd pick in the 2012 NFL draft, the Minnesota* Vikings select: The LA Coliseum

  45. 69jaredallen69 says: Apr 19, 2012 6:11 PM

    billjaehne says:

    trade the 3rd pick and a 2nd and 4th to bengals for both of there first round picks

    The 2 first rd picks are not enough to even get the #3 pick…why would the Vikings give up more picks? Bengals Fan???

  46. reppster says: Apr 19, 2012 6:20 PM

    Anyone but Kalil would be stupid, they need to get protection for Ponder, Claiborne scored awful at the practice days and Blackmon may have a slight attitude problem.

  47. bobnelsonjr says: Apr 19, 2012 6:22 PM

    Never underestimate the vikings ability to screw up.

  48. taintedsaints2009 says: Apr 19, 2012 6:35 PM

    Kalil may as well rent an apartment in MN for his rookie year, because he’ll be back at USC in less than a year.

  49. lostsok says: Apr 19, 2012 7:22 PM

    I believe the phrase that best describes what Minnehaha is doing is “getting cute.”

    My advice: don’t.

  50. skylander14 says: Apr 19, 2012 7:41 PM

    You don’t say?

  51. rooski443 says: Apr 19, 2012 7:43 PM

    kalil is not putting asses into the seats. Trade down, get more picks. Draft Floyd, and in the 2nd round either harrison(safety) or Hill (WR). Having good Wr’s will slow the pass rush making all of the OL better. Oh, no more 9 in the box…

  52. cpo187 says: Apr 19, 2012 8:04 PM

    Kalil could be the LT in MN for the next 10-15 years. Building a strong OL and DL is the first step in rebuilding a successful team. WR’s are plug and play. You can get a couple good FA WR’s every year. A trade for Asante Samuel would fill the CB void for the year. CB’s are very hit or miss and Claiborne isn’t worth the gamble.

  53. purplecrowe says: Apr 19, 2012 8:08 PM

    All this talk about not drafting Claiborne because of the Vikes scheme is ridiculous. Pick him, line him up across Megatron, Jennings, Marshall, etc and be happy. You can leave him on the “island” and still employ cover-2 schemes elsewhere…

    All this talk comparing Kalil to Thomas and other greats is ridiculous. just because you are the best left tackle in the draft (also debatable, the tackle from Iowa grades out almost as well) doesn’t make you a generational LT…

    The best bet would be to trade down, get some picks and still get a comparable pick later in the round (Reiff at LT, Floyd at WR, etc…) I just don’t think there will be any takers. Why? Because although each are good players, none of them are transformational players you’d traditionally like to get at #3. Of all the years to lock in at #3, this wasn’t the year…

  54. tweeter75 says: Apr 19, 2012 8:38 PM

    I say take Kalil. Then he can start looking for a house in Los Angeles.

  55. jamesnieman says: Apr 19, 2012 8:51 PM

    If I’m the Vikings I offer this to the Browns.
    Swap 1st round picks for their 3rd and 4th rd picks. This allows the Browns to get the player of their choice without having to give up their other 1st rd or 2nd rd picks.

    Trade the 4th overall to either the Buccaneers, Rams, Dolphins, or Bills. Buccaneers. And Rams give up a 2nd rd or Dolphins and Bills give up 2nd and 3rd picks.

    If they traded back to 6, then either Kalil, Blackmon, or Claiborne will Still be on the board. If they trade all the way back to 10 they could get Floyd or Reiff, and have two 2nd and two 3rd rd picks which could be used to move back into the 1st round or select players like Smith, Jeffery, Randle, David, Denard

  56. glenne81 says: Apr 19, 2012 8:56 PM

    slide down and draft Reiff pick up another very high 2nd round pick and dont look back. its a win. simple.

  57. bozosforall says: Apr 19, 2012 8:58 PM

    bobnelsonjr says:
    Apr 19, 2012 6:22 PM
    Never underestimate bobnelsonjr’s ability to screw sheep.

    __
    Fixed it for you.

  58. stellarperformance says: Apr 19, 2012 9:49 PM

    Isn’t this a little bit like wondering which deck chairs to purchase for the Titanic?

  59. keeley2 says: Apr 19, 2012 10:30 PM

    realdealsteel: Vikings are ran stupidly.

    No further comment is needed.

  60. boobsmcgoo says: Apr 19, 2012 10:35 PM

    Vikings will skip the pick, let two teams jump ahead of them, then blame the mistake on their alleged trade partner…….again!

  61. vikemike257 says: Apr 19, 2012 10:39 PM

    All this talk about trading down is absurd, so pass on an elite talent to get an extra 2nd or 3rd round pick would not be wise for a team that lacks elite talent. This is going to be a 2 year project, they cannot and will not fill all their holes in this draft. So collect the most talented guys you can. Quality not Quanity

  62. raiderkilla0 says: Apr 19, 2012 11:23 PM

    I think they should draft Trent Richardson and then Ponder would never have to throw.

  63. jwreck says: Apr 20, 2012 12:07 AM

    rooski443 says: Apr 19, 2012 7:43 PM

    kalil is not putting asses into the seats. Trade down, get more picks. Draft Floyd, and in the 2nd round either harrison(safety) or Hill (WR). Having good Wr’s will slow the pass rush making all of the OL better. Oh, no more 9 in the box…
    ___________
    “Kalil is not putting asses in seats”

    Fair. It’s never fun to watch your team use a super-high draft pick to shore up the offensive line rather than draft some human highlight-reel of a skill position player. However, you know what does put asses in seats? Ponder to Harvin for a 70 yard TD, AP setting a new rushing record, Ponder developing into a pro-bowl quarterback he instead of turning into David Carr. All these things are possible through the magic of really good offensive linemen.

    Also receivers don’t really help protect the quarterback unless it’s a very good slot receiver in a fast paced west coast offense. Hill and Floyd are both big, athletic downfield threats in the vein of Fitzgerald and Megatron. Ponder would need more time in the pocket in order to maximize their potential.

    Additionally the Vikes need to keep Ponder from getting knocked on his ass with five in the box before drafting receiving threats to prevent him from having to deal with nine in the box.

  64. vikings101 says: Apr 21, 2012 7:02 PM

    KALIL!!! doi, yea he won’t put butts in the stadium but he will keep ponder off his! And to produce in the NFC north it’s either eat or be eaten! Kalil isnt Joe Thomas but anybody is better then Charlie Johnson! If u want talent draft defense! Morris Claiborne can start day one in minny! But if we are to trade with Miami for 8th overall it may be a reach but how about LB Luke kuechley? WR Micheal Floyd? We are in a great position this year! And I just can’t wait to see who we snag! Skol vikings

  65. oldlineman says: Apr 22, 2012 4:16 PM

    Vikings were not happy with their LT last year, talk is sliding him inside at LG. They also did not address the LT position in free-agency. Is there anyone who could come in and start at LT in the draft? Vikes want to trade-down, next LT is Martan after Kalil. Reiff looks to me as a RT or Guard. Draft Kalil.

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