With the NFL Scouting Combine officially wrapped up, the next step for Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman and his staff before the NFL Draft is looking at free agency, which opens on March 9.
On Thursday, ESPN's Jeff Dickerson offered his take on Minnesota's most pressing needs, starting with wide receiver. Dickerson suggested that the Vikings could take a look at a veteran receiver that is scheduled to hit free agency. A few options he listed included Mohamed Sanu, Marques Colston or Jermaine Kearse.
Dickerson said the offensive line should be the Vikings second priority in free agency.
With Buffalo's Cordy Glenn off the mark (franchise tag), the Vikings can still find help up front, and certainly inside at guard, in a free-agent class that includes Baltimore's Kelechi Osemele, San Francisco's Alex Boone, Buffalo's Richie Incognito and Kansas City's Jeff Allen.
Lastly, Dickerson said the Vikings should target a safety who can complement Harrison Smith. He pointed out that current Vikings safeties Andrew Sendejo and Robert Blanton are both free agents and suggested Minnesota could bring in another player that Vikings Head Coach Mike Zimmer is familiar with. Dickerson wrote:
Since Mike Zimmer used to coach in Cincinnati, keep an eye on Bengals free agent safeties Reggie Nelson and George Iloka. Both Nelson and Iloka make sense for Minnesota to pursue in the new league year.
Mock draft points to WR Josh Doctson
There are seven weeks between now and the 2016 NFL Draft. As all 32 teams work feverishly with planning meetings and draft boards, analysts and media members continue to revise mock drafts following the combine. John Holler of Viking Update put together his mock draft 2.0, in which he has the Vikings selecting TCU wide receiver Josh Doctson at No. 23.
Holler said there's an argument for a number of positions with the 23rd pick, including offensive lineman, safety or linebacker. However, he stuck with Doctson as Minnesota's choice. Holler wrote:
Doctson did nothing at the Combine to hurt his stock and the biggest missing piece on the Vikings roster is a playmaking deep threat that can give Teddy Bridgewater the firepower that has been lacking in the Vikings offense. Free agency will impact what the Vikings are looking for here, but Doctson is a difference-maker and the Vikings need him.
For the first three picks of the draft, Holler slated tackle Laremy Tunsil going to the Titans, quarterback Carson Wentz going to the Browns and defensive end DeForest Buckner joining the Chargers.