Rick Spielman: Vikings aren’t locked into taking a receiver in first round

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If you’re the sort who likes to spend the days leading up to the draft reading various people’s predictions about how players will come off the board, you’ve likely noticed that most of this fine nation’s mock drafters believe the Vikings are going to take a wide receiver in the first round of the draft.

Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman seems to be aware of that trend because he opened a Tuesday press conference by saying he was sure he’d get questions about receivers and preemptively announced that the Vikings aren’t “honed in” on taking one on Thursday night. Spielman cited getting Stefon Diggs in the fifth round of last year’s draft as an example of finding wideouts in different places and said he thinks this year’s crop offers possibilities throughout the process.

“I do think there’s a lot of quality at that position as you go down through it,” Spielman said. “There’s different styles, different types, small ones, tall ones. I’ve mentioned earlier, we don’t look so much at the height, per se, as the catching radius. There’s fast guys, there’s possession guys, so there’s a lot of different flavors.”

Spielman also spent some time talking about what the receivers other than Diggs can bring to the team, but it’s still a spot that sticks out as one the Vikings need to upgrade if they’re going to take a step forward offensively in 2016.

76 responses to “Rick Spielman: Vikings aren’t locked into taking a receiver in first round

  1. They should consider it, Diggs was good for a few games but then fell off. Another thing they need to do, is get some youth in that Oline.

    Spielman needs to stay patient and resist the urge to trade back into the first so he can take the 2nd day of the draft off.

  2. Sounds like a typical smokescreen, designed to throw other teams off that might want to trade ahead of them to land a WR.

    That said, if Treadwell and Doctson are gone by #23, and a solid OT is still around, I expect they’ll draft that the guy that ends up replacing either Loadholdt or Kalil long-term. That OL was just brutal last year when it came to pass-blocking, and upgrading the passing game starts there.

  3. He watches and listens carefully to Ted Thompson and will do what he can to replicate his actions. He desperately wants to say he wants to pick “the best player available,” but doesn’t want to sound so obvious.

  4. Wicked smokescreen, Spieldope.
    You’ve fooled exactly no one.

    Slick Rick has to draft receivers early and often.
    How else is he going to cover up his 2nd huge mistake at Quarterback?

  5. After that performance in the playoffs – the Vikings might select a kicker.

    Just words of helpful advice here.

  6. Since Zimmer has been here, the Vikes have drafted 5 defensive players vs 2 offensive players in the first 3 rounds of the draft. I wonder if they will take a safety or corner.

  7. Please, Rick. The correct expression is ‘HOMED in’; not ‘honed in’.
    Think homing beacon, something you follow to a destination or goal. You hone a knife or razor to put an edge on it.

  8. Yeah because Ted Thompson is the only GM that says he wants to select the best player available… Come out from under your cheese curds and wake up

  9. I think the smartest thing the Vikings could do is take Treadwell in the first, bigger body can help more with Run blocking vs. a speedster WR, and gives Theodore a big target.

    Since this is a deeper class @OL I would take best one available in the second round. If Spielman gets antsy instead of letting the draft

    Eventually get a back up QB too in the later rounds because Shaun Hill is probably going to be calling it a career soon.

  10. Honestly as the Vikings keep getting better and better, the Packer troll comments are starting to get more outlandish and less fact based as we go. Quite entertaining really.

  11. Spielman as you know, trades down a lot. Unless something too good to pass up falls to him, that is what he will do. They only have 8 picks , so trading down will give him another pick. If the Vikings are still able to stay in the 1st round, which they should be able to, they should be able to get a BPA defensive player. There will probably still be a lot of 1st round quality DTs and DEs out there. The high rated tackles will be gone by then. Then they can go after their safety, OLB, tackle/guard, AS WELL, as their WR. They can use that extra pick pick to get a tackle to develop and take over Kalil’s spot.

    The not only visited Docston and Treadwell, they also got together with Sterling Shepard, a probable 3rd rounder.

    BTW, only Cinncinati at #24 really needs a WR so Spielman may trade just down enough in the 1st to get his WR and also get that additional quality player. There are a number of teams looking for defense at the bottom of the 1st round, and they might just want to trade up to get their player.

  12. Yeah right, and the first player selected in most fantasy football drafts next year will be Eddie Lacy.

    Spielman did pretty well in the draft last year in the lower rounds, with 5 of his picks starting at one time or another, 3 of whom made the NFL All-Rookie team. Wonder how many of Ted’s precious picks made that All-Rookie team?

  13. gbbvan says:
    Apr 26, 2016 5:01 PM

    Most of us Packer fans don’t troll.
    We just pay back.

    ____

    lol… because of how and where you made your comment it makes you a troll.

  14. Don’t worry Green Bay. Once the dust from the draft has settled, the Vikes will have a highly rated draft and the Packer front office will be saying “Oh no, what have I done?”

  15. Who is going to be the first troll to bring up the facts that little erin Rogers has never won an OT playoff game? ZERO let that sink in!

  16. Fans saying WRS aren’t important is comical, Turd bay has the worst WR core in the league last year and it showed! Don’t worry, little jordi Nelson and his gimpy knee will be back!

  17. Guaranteed he makes a bunch of moves, because his M.O has always been to try to look like the smartest guy in the room. Look being the operative word here, because the results are mediocre at best. He’s a perfect fit for Minnie…a state that once spent $106M to make a housing project look pretty, not to make a park or provide quality food or something that may actually benefit the residents.

    Please Canada, take Minnesota off of our hands so we don’t continually have to be embarrassed by these pretend people.

  18. Vikings have never won a playoff OT game in their franchise history. Yet alone a Superbowl. Thanks for the facts and let that sink in Erin… Ani85…

  19. Never won a playoff OT game???
    Most teams haven’t!
    Where the hell did you get that stupid stat??

    Packers should stop trolling these Vikings stories & worry
    About that overrated defense of theirs blowing ANOTHER
    4th quarter playoff lead, losing another chance to make a SB
    and wasting ANOTHER year of Aaron Rodgers prime!

  20. The Green Bay Rodgers. These people continue to crack me up. Scored on a QB and think they have a “team” and a “direction”. They have Aaron Rodgers. End of story.

  21. I’m confused on why he would choose to answer the question with any specific details, about WR or any other position on the roster.

    Since the Vikings have rarely picked in the back half of the draft, they are about to find out there is a whole different strategy to it. There is a degree of patience needed because many times a player you targeted gets picked one or two or three spots prior to your pick. So you better have options as your time slot approaches. Getting their pick in on time will be an improvement over previous Viking GM’s and not picking a WR that has stone hands (Troy Williamson anyone? and with Aaron Rodgers in the Green Room) is another improvement.

  22. Like most people I think the vikings need to draft another QB. The only thing against them is their entire history of not drafting well at QB (their best were Kramer and Culpepper).

    I think they should be attempting to get Fitzpatrick or Hoyer during or shortly after the draft. That way they can focus on filling the holes in the rest of their roster.

    I hope Rick Spielman is their GM for another 10 years.

  23. favresthumbdrive says:
    Apr 26, 2016 7:01 PM
    The Green Bay Rodgers. These people continue to crack me up. Scored on a QB and think they have a “team” and a “direction”. They have Aaron Rodgers. End of story.
    //////////////////////////////////////

    But he’s nothing more than a “system” QB. We were taught that by Viking fans.

    Is it not true? Were you deceiving us? On purpose????

  24. stellarperformance says:
    Apr 26, 2016 5:07 PM
    He watches and listens carefully to Ted Thompson and will do what he can to replicate his actions. He desperately wants to say he wants to pick “the best player available,” but doesn’t want to sound so obvious.
    —————————————–

    Not really, Spielman is actually aware of free agency.

    I wonder how many championships the pack has lost out on because TT couldn’t be bothered to pick up affordable veteran players to add depth when the yearly packer injury wave strikes. 3? 4?

    It’s all very sad. Especially when you realize that it won’t be long and suddenly Aaron has trouble making the throws that used to be effortless for him. The footwork starts to slow down and he can no longer feel that blind side rush coming before it’s too late. It really is a shame.

  25. WR is by far the weakest link on paper. After last year, I don’t think the Vikes can have enough depth on the oline which could still be improved. That said, I hope they don’t go OL in the first round unless they trade down. I also don’t think safety is as big of a need as ‘scouts’ have made it out to be. I think Exum or Harris are as good or better options than anyone they could get this year in the 2nd round or beyond.

    In my mind, Plan A is Treadwell or Doctson. Plan B is to trade down. Plan C is a pass rusher (love Noah Spence – you can never have enough pass rushers), Plan D is oline. But all that is moot if someone plummets at a different position (Elliot, Jack, Stanley, etc).

    Would also love to see Su’a Cravens in Zimmer’s defense. I think he would fit in perfectly. Not sure where he’ll be drafted tho, I’ve seen everywhere from early 2nd to late 3rd. This draft is deep with a lot of talent at a lot of different positions. Should be a good one.

  26. ariani1985 says:
    Apr 26, 2016 6:35 PM
    Who is going to be the first troll to bring up the facts that little erin Rogers has never won an OT playoff game? ZERO let that sink in!
    /////////////////////////////////////

    Who?

  27. Yeah right, and the first player selected in most fantasy football drafts next year will be Eddie Lacy.
    ——–
    What’s funny is that EL was the first pick in a lot of fantasy drafts last year. He was also rookie of the year and has more rushing yards and td’s over the last 3 years than AP of Bell, but whatever floats your boat.

  28. I wonder how many championships the pack has lost out on because TT couldn’t be bothered to pick up affordable veteran players to add depth when the yearly packer injury wave strikes
    ——-
    Ironic that MN fans are talking about our championships. Win one….or even just win a playoff game…then talk….til then it’s just hot air and stupidity.

  29. Oh, sorry pack fans, I forgot to mention that defense is the group of players that are on the field trying to prevent the offense from scoring.

  30. Packers won more playoff games last year than the Minnesota has in the last 6 combined.

    More than Zimmer has in his career.

  31. Hey Packers fans, if GB is soooo awesome & the Vikes are so incompetent, how come GB lost home games to EVERY divisional opponent last year??!!!

    And we a miracle Hail Mary pass away from being SWEPT by the Lions!!!

    Yet the Vikings won the division with a QB who has “baby hands”, an incompetent GM & no talent???

    Packers fans are a bunch of clueless trolls!

  32. He was also rookie of the year and has more rushing yards and td’s over the last 3 years than AP of Bell, but whatever floats your boat.

    —-

    That is impressive. AP played in 31 games over the last three years. EL played in 46… And has 249 extra yards to show for his extra 15 games.

    Did you also know that Teddy threw for 6,039 more yards and 28 more touchdowns than Rodgers when you compare their first two seasons?

  33. Stay as far away from a WR as possible!
    Drafting a Premier WR will only magnify the most obvious flaw on an otherwise solid Team.

  34. Best case scenario for Minnesota is BOTH WRs Treadwell & Doctson are there at #23. MN can trade back with Denver at #31, Denver takes a QB, MN still gets a top WR at #31 that they can control for 5 years

    Plus they gather a couple more draft picks

    With soooooo much talent, Packers only “need” one position, ILB
    And there’s only one ILB worth taking in the 1st round, Ragland

    All the other LB prospects among the top 40-50 players, are OLB
    So hopefully a team like ATL of Buffalo takes Ragland & leaves GB with the 5th or 6th best DT

  35. Speilman & company have a pretty good track record. These so called experts have it set, in their mind, what “THET” think the team(s) should do.
    But they do not spend the hours with each team, their coaches, and the other players, that the GMs do.
    If Speilman has an idea of where to go & who to pick….Let him do it. He’s getting paid for it….not us.

  36. golforepar, maybe you can answer this since no other packer fan has been able to for 4+ months. If Teddy’s average pass traveled further in the air than Rodgers average pass… Rodgers is a check down QB by your definition? Yes or yes?

  37. Vikings actually have a player named “Danielle.” Guess that’s why their fans make up girls’ nam,es for Packers.
    Viking fans continue to focus on all rookie and pro bowl selections. Packer fans enjoy their team going further in the playoffs.

  38. Vikings actually have a player named “Danielle.”

    Don’t forget that he’s a rookie, about 21 years old, a back up, only played half a season and is already better than any DLman on the Packers.

  39. Packers fans love their history, yet they don’t know much about it!

    The first “3-peat” for Green Bay back 1929-31, Green Bay won exactly ZERO playoff games!
    That was the NFL then…you won championships with a single playoff game!

    The recent history of the NFL dates back to the AFL/NFL merger in 1970. Before then, there was no Monday Night Football, very few Wes Coast games, no free agency, so on & so on

    So since the merger, when the NFL consisted of 26 teams, then 28, then 30 & then 32, there are TEN TEAMS that hav won as many or more Super Bowls than the Packers!

    And at least 13 teams that have played in as many or more Super Bowls as Green Bay!

    For a franchise whose fans claim to be the “best” year in & year out, you’d think they’d have more than 3 SB appearances & 2 titles!

    That’s the same number of titles as the Baltimore Ravens!
    In 30 fewer seasons!
    Lol

  40. Take away the one Super Bowl run for Aaron Rodgers, the Packers playoff record is 3-6!!

    Three other playoff wins outside of that one year
    Pretty pedestrian for the “baddest man on the planet”

    And that title was six seasons ago….
    How many seasons have Green Bay been a “Super Bowl favorite”, only to fall short??

    At least the last 5!

  41. purpleguy says:
    Apr 26, 2016 6:22 PM
    Spielman did pretty well in the draft last year in the lower rounds, with 5 of his picks starting at one time or another, 3 of whom made the NFL All-Rookie team. Wonder how many of Ted’s precious picks made that All-Rookie team?
    ________________

    The only reason Diggs made the All Rookie Team is because they had to select a 2nd WR behind Cooper, in what was a very thin class at WR that got even thiner after Kevin White of Chicago went down. He had 4 good games out of the gate when he finally got playing time, amounting 400 yards and 2 TDs.

    Then rounded out the last 9 games averaging less than 35 Yards Per Game. With less than 150 yards total the last 6 games. Its one thing to say Diggs could improve, next year and being excited about him developling, but to try “boast” about a few players named to the “All Rookie Team (which vary by the website you go to)” is flat out foolish.

  42. tjacks, really?? Take AP off the Vikes and the Packers have a better running game. Just like Jordy. You have to know to have a great team “baby hands” Bridgewater won’t carry you.

  43. Oh, and Teddy’s hands are 9.25″..

    Rodgers massive hand size? 9.38″

    1/8 of an inch difference lol. Take some time and come back with some actual facts before the season starts.

  44. LOL… “He only got selected to the All-Rookie team because they had to select a player for the All-Rookie team and he was better than the other options. That’s the only reason!”

  45. pkrlvr says:
    Apr 26, 2016 7:23 PM

    What’s funny is that EL was the first pick in a lot of fantasy drafts last year. He was also rookie of the year and has more rushing yards and td’s over the last 3 years than AP of Bell, but whatever floats your boat.

    ————

    Eddie Lacy = 46 games played 3,075 yards, 23 TDs
    Adrian Peterson = 31 games played 2,826, 21 TDs
    Le’Veon Bell = 37 games played 2,7777, 19 TDs

    So Eddie Lacy has 15 more games played and 249 more yards ad 2 TDs over AP in that span.

    Or 16.6 yards and .133 TDs per game for FIFTEEN games.

    He has 298 more yards and 4 more TDs over La’Veon Bell with 9 more games played

    Or 33.11 Yards and .44 TDs per game.

    Wow, you sold me! Lacy is really, really fat.

  46. It’s gotta be scary to think that the Vikings really do need to vastly improve their offense and they still finished

    11-5 and NFC North Champs

  47. shaggytoodle says:
    Apr 26, 2016 8:33 PM
    purpleguy says:
    Apr 26, 2016 6:22 PM
    Spielman did pretty well in the draft last year in the lower rounds, with 5 of his picks starting at one time or another, 3 of whom made the NFL All-Rookie team. Wonder how many of Ted’s precious picks made that All-Rookie team?
    ________________

    The only reason Diggs made the All Rookie Team is because they had to select a 2nd WR behind Cooper, in what was a very thin class at WR that got even thiner after Kevin White of Chicago went down. He had 4 good games out of the gate when he finally got playing time, amounting 400 yards and 2 TDs.

    Then rounded out the last 9 games averaging less than 35 Yards Per Game. With less than 150 yards total the last 6 games. Its one thing to say Diggs could improve, next year and being excited about him developing, but to try “boast” about a few players named to the “All Rookie Team (which vary by the website you go to)” is flat out foolish.

    ———————-

    It was actually 8 rookies (7 picks, 1 UFA) that started last year.

    You would have to be a complete idiot not to recognize Diggs’ talent (but of course, you probably only care about stats). The guy is electric with the ball in his hand. The drop off in production was a result of him being the only WR defenses have to key on. Also, Cooper dropped 9 times as many passes as Diggs. For him being a 5th rounder, I think its safe to say he was a steal, and arguably the best value for a rookie WR.

  48. With this crop of WR’s why would you just focus on them? The Vikings are set up in the offseason so they do not need to pick one position. Treadwell or Doctson in the 1st round picks. If not available pick up others in the later rounds. More defense would be nice. Safety, defensive linemen.

  49. Can someone please explain how a Viking fan feels entitled to throw post-season futility shade at the Green Bay Packers?

    We’re talking about the most prolific post-season loser in the history of the NFL versus the team with the most post-season championships in the history of the NFL.

    It can’t get any simpler than that, but here you are, talking like it was reversed.

    Are your superiority complexes that deeply ingrained?

  50. The NFL didn’t really begin until the merger in 1970 and the packers do not have the most post-season championships since then, not even close.

    We are superior simply due to the fact that we aren’t from Wisconsin.

  51. purplepackerhater says:
    Apr 27, 2016 11:36 AM
    The NFL didn’t really begin until the merger in 1970…

    ////////////////////////////////

    Another “Bizarro World” perspective. Next we’ll be hearing that Walsh didn’t miss and the Vikings actually won that game. We were just watching it wrong.

  52. tjacks7 says:
    Apr 26, 2016 9:31 PM

    LOL… “He only got selected to the All-Rookie team because they had to select a player for the All-Rookie team and he was better than the other options. That’s the only reason!”
    ====================================
    Just like Bridgewater being the 7th alternate chosen for the Pro Bowl.

  53. tjacks7 says:
    Apr 26, 2016 8:14 PM

    golforepar, maybe you can answer this since no other packer fan has been able to for 4+ months. If Teddy’s average pass traveled further in the air than Rodgers average pass… Rodgers is a check down QB by your definition? Yes or yes?
    ==================================
    You can’t determine anything from that, except that a QB’s average yards in the air may be more than another’s. It won’t tell you his downfield ability, whether he checks down often, or anything like that. It would be like using batting average to to prove that someone hits a lot of doubles. Doesn’t work.

  54. frank booth wins the prize!

    Not to mention the fact that last year for Rodgers was an anomaly due to the WR issues in beating press coverage.

    Yet somehow the last time I checked….he had the highest career YPA out of ALL active NFL QB’s. That is based off of 8 years as a starting QB.

    In 2 years, Teddy has established his career YPA as a check-down artist. Not surprising given his noodle arm and horrible inaccuracy throwing the ball downfield.

  55. ✓Tavaris ✓Joe ✓Donovan ✓Christian ✓Matt ✓Josh ✓Teddy ?Deshaun ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ © says:
    Apr 27, 2016 12:22 PM
    “Cooper dropped 9 times as many passes as Diggs. ”

    Wow. This is beyond deft. Now tell me how many more snaps and targets Cooper had vs. Diggs.
    ______________

    Since you can’t figure it out yourself..

    Amari Cooper:
    Games started: 15
    Targets: 130
    Catches: 72
    Catches/target : 55%
    Yrds: 1070
    Yrds/catch: 14.9
    TD: 6
    Drops: 18

    Stefon Diggs:
    Games started: 9
    Targets: 84
    Catches: 52
    Catch/Target: 62%
    Yrds: 720
    Yrds/catch: 13.8
    Td: 4
    Drops: 2

    I’m not sure on snap count (has to be way higher), but it doesn’t really matter since he only had 20 more receptions in way more games. I’m guessing his yrds per route run was less than diggs.

    But here’s the kicker…
    Diggs: 5th rd, 146th overall pick
    Cooper: 1st rd, 4th overall pick

    I’m not going to act like Diggs is better than Cooper, and you can call me a fool if you’d like, but I would take diggs with the 146th pick before I take Cooper with the 4th…

  56. Especially if I were a packers fan who thinks Bridgewater sucks and Carr is way better. How is it that Diggs can put up such similar numbers with an “inferior” QB throwing him the ball? I mean, Jordy sees the best CB in most games (and probably double coverage too), and gronk gets doubled all the time, how is it that these guys still put up monster numbers? If Carr is better than teddy and Cooper is better than diggs, why is it that Cooper’s numbers don’t destroy Diggs’? Especially when you consider them their average numbers/game.

    Could it be that Diggs played on a team that ran the ball more often? Could the fact that the Vikings were leading more often than the raiders were have an effect on the WRs’ numbers, rather than indicating their skill levels?

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