A talented Vikings defensive line got much more talented on Saturday morning with the selection of Everson Griffen. By all accounts, Griffen is a 1st round talent but some minor off-field concerns as well as consistency and effort level questions might have caused him to slip in the draft this year.
To be fair, the off-field concerns and consistency issues are not something with which I’m too familiar, so I’ll give him a chance to explain those. And, the truth of the matter is, what happened in the past matters much less than what will happen going forward. As Vikings Director of College Scouting Scott Studwell said earlier this morning, it’s not as if Griffen is a bad person. The Vikings have made clear their commitment to finding good people who are also good football players, so I’m confident Griffen will fit in well with the type of players Vikings VP of Player Personnel Rick Spielman and Head Coach Brad Childress have brought in under the Wilf ownership.
Anyway, here’s some more analysis from Studwell and also NFL.com on Griffen…
Studwell: “He’ll see the sense of urgency. He’s coming from a program that competes and plays hard every day in practice. So he’s going to come into our tempo and understand it; I think he’ll buy into it quickly.”
NFL.com analysis: “The Vikings get a top-25 talent in the fourth round with the addition of Everson Griffen. The energetic pass rusher has excellent initial quickness, and his ability to pressure the pocket will undoubtedly earn him minutes in a deep Vikings rotation. This is an excellent value pick for the team, regardless of his off-field issues.”
Studwell: “He can play both sides. He’s big enough to be a base end. He’s athletic enough to be a right end. He can also go inside nickel as I said before. He’s got a lot of versatility. He actually could probably be a standup player in a 3-4 (defensive scheme). We’ve got a new toy and we may put him in a lot of different places.”
Tags: Everson Griffen, Scott Studwell
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