ESPN’s Courtney Cronin recently fielded a handful of fan questions, including two that asked about Minnesota’s current situation at wide receiver and running back. Cronin wrote:
Minnesota signed Kendall Wright as someone it expects to grab hold of the No. 3 receiver role, but that doesn’t mean [Laquon] Treadwell won’t have every opportunity to show why he should be getting those targets from [Kirk] Cousins. Wright was among the most productive slot receivers in the NFL last season with an 80.4 catch rate, according to Pro Football Focus, but he has outside experience and can be moved around depending upon where Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs are lined up.
Cronin expects the Vikings offense under new coordinator John DeFilippo to be “reliant upon having a ton of pass catchers.”
I think the Wright signing and adding Tavarres King for depth challenges the entire receiving corps – with Treadwell at the forefront – to find how they can contribute in this offense. Guys like Stacy Coley and Cayleb Jones also have a big opportunity ahead of them in OTAs and training camp to show what they can add as Minnesota looks to expand how it uses its receivers further down the depth chart (Coley should also be a contender in the return game).
Another fan question asked if the Vikings have sufficient depth at the running back position or if they might target one later in the draft. Minnesota currently has Latavius Murray, Dalvin Cook, Mack Brown and fullback C.J. Ham on the roster. Former Vikings RB Jerick McKinnon signed with the 49ers in free agency.
Cronin said the Vikings could involve Brown in the workload but anticipates that they could target a running back in the later rounds they “they can use situationally.”
There are other needs they’ll want to address in the earlier rounds on the offensive line and at cornerback, tight end and linebacker, but finding a running back in this class for depth purposes […] won’t be hard to do. I wrote this before, but I like Jaylen Samuels (NC State), Mark Walton (Miami), Justin Jackson (Northwestern) and Kyle Hicks (TCU) for this type of role with the Vikings.
Brock Lesner re-signs with WWE, prepares to face Roman Reigns
Former Golden Gopher Brock Lesnar, who had a brief stint with the Vikings prior to the 2004 season, has re-signed with the WWE.
CBS Sports’ Adam Silverstein said the new deal came shortly after Lesnar defended the universal championship against Roman Reigns. Silverstein wrote:
Lesnar, who has held the title for a full year after beating Goldberg for it at WrestleMania 33, will defend the championship against Reigns once again – this time inside a steel cage in the main event of the Greatest Royal Rumble, a special event set to be held at the King Abdullah Sports City Stadium in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on Friday, April 27 at [11 a.m. (CT)].
Reigns, who was born Leati Anoa‘i, also spent brief amounts of time with the Vikings and Jaguars during the 2007 offseason. He played a full season for the CFL’s Edmonton Eskimos in 2008 before retiring from football and pursuing a professional wrestling career.
*USA TODAY shares perspective on Vikings draft needs *
What are the Vikings biggest needs – or lack thereof – as they approach the 2018 NFL Draft?
Lorenzo Reyes of *USA TODAY *took a look at three position groups and opined if the Vikings should make any moves on the offensive line, at cornerback or at tight end. Reyes first said that he expects Minnesota to address the offensive line “early on” in the draft and “perhaps multiple times.” He wrote:
Even though Minnesota sits 30th in the first round, it should have several good options to choose from. Notre Dame’s Mike McGlinchey, perhaps the top tackle, could be gone by then but is the clear choice if available. Otherwise, the Vikings could look at players who may be interchangeable at both guard and tackle, like Georgia’s Isaiah Wynn or Texas’ Connor Williams. Pittsburgh’s Brian O’Neill and Louisville’s Geron Christian could be tackle targets on Day 2.
At cornerback, Reyes said the Vikings could look to add depth there but don’t need to target a corner in the early rounds. He highlighted Nick Nelson (Wisconsin), Duke Dawson (Florida) and Holton Hill (Texas) as potential Round 3 options should the Vikings look there.
Lastly, Reyes looked at the Vikings current tight end situation and said Cousins “wouldn’t mind another red zone weapon” in addition to Kyle Rudolph.
*This year’s tight end class seems middling. But mid-round options include Oklahoma’s Mark Andrews, Stanford’s Dalton Schultz, Central Florida's Jordan Akins and Indiana's Ian Thomas. *