EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings needed a boost for their 31st-ranked passing offense, and they selected one in the first round on Thursday night, taking Mississippi receiver Laquon Treadwell 23rd overall.
My take: GM Rick Spielman said in February the Vikings were looking for a Michael Irvin-style split end for their offense, and they got exactly that. Treadwell doesn't turn 21 until this summer, and at 6-foot-2, he adds the size the Vikings desperately needed in their receiver group. His footwork should help him separate from defensive backs, and he's got the size to block for RB Adrian Peterson -- which is no small part of the Vikings' offense. Treadwell’s slower 40 times helped him drop to the Vikings, and when he was still there, they filled a big need. Treadwell suffered a broken fibula and dislocated ankle in 2014, but the Vikings believe he will get faster as he is further removed from the injury.
Run on receivers: Treadwell was the third consecutive receiver drafted, after the Houston Texans traded up to select Notre Dame's Will Fuller and the Washington Redskins selected TCU's Josh Doctson. It's the first time in the NFL's modern era that receivers were taken with three consecutive picks, according to ESPN Stats & Information. We don't know if the Vikings would have taken Doctson had he been available -- they spent extensive time with both Doctson and Treadwell before the draft -- but in our NFL Nation mock draft on Tuesday night, I preferred Treadwell over Doctson because of his size and age. Doctson turns 24 in December, while Treadwell should have time to grow with QB Teddy Bridgewater.
Passing on Jack: The Vikings could have taken a UCLA linebacker for the third consecutive year if they wanted to group Myles Jack with Anthony Barr and Eric Kendricks. But in the end, the team decided to fill what might have been its most obvious need instead of drafting the talented Jack, who admitted he might eventually need microfracture surgery on his knee.
What’s next: The Vikings will have two picks on the second day of the draft. In the second round they'll make the 54th overall selection, and in the third round they have the 86th overall pick.