The Vikings selected Laquon Treadwell with the 23rd overall pick Thursday night, making him the seventh receiver ever drafted by Minnesota in the first round.
The immediate reaction was how the selection of the 6-foot-2, 221-pound receiver might help quarterback Teddy Bridgewater by providing a large target who caught 202 passes in three college seasons.
Jim Souhan of the Star Tribune, however, noted that the Vikings confidence in Bridgewater positions the team to capitalize on Treadwell's abilities. He called the receiver "the right kind of player at the right position."
*Treadwell should help balance the offense. He should give Bridgewater confidence to throw the ball into tight spaces, and downfield, knowing that Treadwell will fight for the ball. Treadwell's blocking could help the running game, and his ability to catch the ball in traffic should help the offense in the red zone. *
Jerry Rice Impressed by Treadwell
The first round of the 2016 NFL Draft is over and done with as the Vikings tabbed Mississippi wide receiver Laquon Treadwell with the 23rd pick.
There was plenty of praise for the pick, including from Hall of Fame wide receiver Jerry Rice.
In an article recapped by Derek Wetmore of 1500ESPN.com, Rice had plenty of good things to say about the 20-year-old Treadwell.
"I like what I see on the football field. Pretty big body that can run good routes, that can position himself and also make plays," Rice told NFL Network in a recent interview.
Thank you Mr. Rice, words sit deep. https://t.co/vupcrseVKt
— Laquon Treadwell (@SuccessfulQuon) April 25, 2016
Rand: Vikings can take step forward with strong draft class
The first round of the draft is always highly hyped, but football teams' successes are rarely built on one draft pick, especially over a long period of time.
The Vikings are scheduled to make seven more selections, including at 54th (in the second round) and 86th (in the third round) on Friday.
Michael Rand of the Star Tribune took a broad look at the state of the Vikings headed into draft weekend, noting how important a solid draft class would be for a team that many consider on the rise.
With the Vikings coming off an 11-5 season that included an NFC North title, Rand said the time is now to keep improving the roster.
So yes, this is a Vikings team loaded with young talent and promise already. But the work cannot be finished. This organization cannot even hit the pause button. This is a very important draft leading into a critical season.
Rand wrote that an influx of the right talent could push the Vikings into the mix as one of the top contenders in the NFC.
In the NFL, if you think you're good you're quite possibly going to be proven wrong. And if you aren't moving forward fast enough, you're going to get passed. The Vikings are built for the long haul, but that's still within the context of a brutally small window of opportunity in this league.
If they nail (the draft), everyone has permission to think big.
Vikings get 'thumbs up' for Treadwell pick
Ben Goessling of ESPN.com gave his quick reaction to the Treadwell pick on Thursday night.
Because of Treadwell's solid frame and his physical nature in both the passing and running games, Goessling gave the Vikings a "thumbs up" for the 23rd pick.
*The Vikings wanted a true split end and in Treadwell they got one. He doesn't turn 21 until this summer, has the size to handle press coverage (and block for Adrian Peterson) and he should give Teddy Bridgewater a much-needed target in an offense that ranked 31st in the league in passing last season. *