EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman is ready to navigate the third and final day of the 2015 NFL Draft with a "boatload" of picks.
After a relatively calm opening on the trade front Thursday night that had just two swaps between a total of four teams, the second night featured a total of 11 trades.
Spielman correctly predicted more movement hours before the second round began when he introduced 11th overall pick* *Trae Waynes for the cornerback's introductory press conference. "Trader Rick," as he's become known for his propensity for draft deals, navigated those waters.
After selecting Eric Kendricks in the second round with the 45th overall pick and creating a surprise reunion with his former college roommate and teammate Anthony Barr, the Vikings started the third round at 76th. Spielman said the Vikings considered trading up, but that didn't materialize, so they opted to trade down but kept Danielle Hunter in mind.
In addition to receiving the 80th pick from Kansas City, Minnesota also received a sixth-round pick (193rd overall) from the Chiefs for the 76th pick.
By sending the 80th pick to Detroit, the Vikings obtained the 88th pick that was used on Hunter and a fifth-round (143rd overall).
The Vikings are now scheduled to make the following selections Saturday:
Fourth round: 110th overall
Fifth round: 137th and 143rd overall
Sixth round: 193rd overall
Seventh round: 228th and 232nd overall
That would be a total of nine picks from wire to wire, one shy of Spielman's goal of 10, but could change as the day progresses, with Spielman saying the Vikings have acquired enough currency of draft picks to move up and down.
"We have a full boatload of picks going into the third day. Looking at our draft board, as you see it unfold, we feel there's a lot of depth through that," Spielman said. "One of the reasons why we did that was because there's so much depth and feel that we're going to be able to get some very good football players to help this football team."
The GM in his ninth draft with the Vikings and fourth in this role said he was pleased to move down twice and still land Hunter and added it's interesting to watch picks come in from other teams and compare where the Vikings had players.
"You put all of this work in this draft and just to see it unfold, and what other teams are doing, what other teams are taking, it's fun to watch and fun to say, 'Boy, we were right on that or boy they must have saw something different than we saw,' Spielman said. "Everybody is going to pick players, and they're going to pick players that they think best help their football team and best help their football team win not only this year but probably in the future as well."