McShay: Morris Claiborne for Vikings

The freight train of national discussion continues to move away from USC tackle Matt Kalil. The latest episode: ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay has changed his pick for the Minnesota Vikings at No. 3 in his soon-to-be released mock draft.

Speaking Wednesday morning on ESPN Radio's "Mike and Mike in the Morning," McShay said he now thinks it's more likely the Vikings will draft LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne if they don't trade down in the first round.

"Nobody knows for sure except the Minnesota Vikings right now," McShay said. "I'm not getting great information but I do get the sense from the people I'm talking to that they're leaning toward going in a different direction than Kalil."

McShay added: "You can't go wrong taking Morris Claiborne."

Agreed. But in the same breath, McShay also noted that if the Vikings truly favor Claiborne at No. 3 and the Cleveland Browns prefer Alabama running back Trent Richardson at No. 4, then the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will miss out on their top two priorities in the draft.

Which, among other things, illustrates why it would be in the Vikings' favor to portray more interest in Claiborne than Kalil. Ostensibly, that could motivate the Bucs to offer a trade that would ensure they could draft Claiborne or Richardson at No. 3. The Vikings could then draft Kalil at the Bucs' No. 5 spot and also add an extra pick.

Earlier: Is Vikings general manager Rick Spielman crazy smart or just crazy?