With offensive tackle at the top of the Vikings needs heading into the 2020 NFL Draft. We breakdown a prospect per round that the Vikings could have their eye on. What I really like about this tackle class is the versatility. Many of these guys can play both sides, or even have the possibilty of kicking inside to guard. Which will be extremely attractive to a team like the Vikings, since they need help at multiple spots.
Round 1 | Austin Jackson, USC
As of now it doesn’t look like anyone from that top tier of offensive tackles will still be on the board at pick 22 or 25 for the Vikings. Leaving them with guys like Austin Jackson & Josh Jones and even that isn’t a given at this point. Jackson is an athletic big man that has one of the hightest ceilings when it comes to offensive tackles in this years draft class. He has the tools, he just needs someone to put it all together for him, and if they do? You are looking at a franchise left tackle for the next 7-10 years.
Round 2 | Lucas Niang, TCU
At 6’7, 328 lbs Niang is a big ole beast with surprising athleticism. Like Jackson above, he is looked at as a guy with a high ceiling but will need some refining on his technique. Niang will most likely find his home at right tackle in the NFL or even possibly inside to guard. Which also brings up the question, do the Vikings move O’Neill over to the left side? With his potential, I think the Vikings would take him and figure out what to do with him after the fact.
Round 3 | Ben Bartch, St. Johns
The easy knock on Bartch is the fact the played for a D-III team. Which is valid, but we have seen small school bigmen come out of college and hold their own and even over achieve. Bartch has been a man amongst boys during his time at St. Johns and has more than warranted himself a 3rd round grade. Not only did he hold his own during his time at the Senior Bowl, but he stood out. The former tight end turned tackle is extremely mobile for an o-lineman and even though he only has 2 years at the position has surprising solid technique. Will have the ability to play tackle OR guard at the next level, and if the Vikings snapped him up, I see no reason he couldn’t push for playing time as a rookie.
Round 4 | Alex Taylor, South Carolina St.
This guy is 6’9, 308 lbs and has athleticism to go along with it. The former basketball player is extremely smooth out there with his big ole long reach. That said. Taylor isnt’ coming in year 1 to compete for a starting spot. This big man is about as raw as they come. But has the potential and size that teams will be clamoring over in the mid rounds. If they can add some strength to go along with his size and tighten up his mechanics, he could be a force to reckon with in year 2 and push to be a starting tackle.
Round 5 | Calvin Throckmorton, Oregon
Throckmorton was a 4 year starter at Oregon and played every damn position along the line during that run. Yes, even center. Very smart player that does everything well, but won’t wow you with his mobility or power. When I think of Throckmorton I think of a career back-up that offers the bonus of depth along the entire line. If he is looking to get playing time early in his career he might have to start inside at guard and work his way out to tackle.
Round 6 | Trey Adams, Washington
Oh what could have been. Adams was one of the best offensive line prospects early in his college career. Unfortunately for him, he has been littered with injuries throughout his Washington career. As of now he is mostly looked at as a high-risk/high-reward type late rounder. He has the size, tools, technique and experience you love to see in an offensive line prospect. The big question is can he hold it together and have the injuries taken their toll on him. If, and this is a big IF, he can stay healthy. I think he does have the tools to be a starting left tackle in the NFL.
Round 7 | Scott Frantz OT, Kansas St.
Frantz is a 3 year starter that has athletic ability and above average strength. Can hold his own at both pass and run blocking. Most likely a career back-up at left tackle, but lets be real we are in the 7th round here. But he has enough to battle for a back-up spot, very smart, picks up blitzes well and has a ton of experience.