Late last week we examined the possibility of a robust trade market emerging for the Vikings #3 pick, with former Texas A&M QB Ryan Tannehill’s proposed inflated draft stock being the genesis of the demand for the Vikings selection.
One could assume Tannehill will be in high demand because he’s regarded as the 3rd best QB prospect in this year’s draft and the first two prospects – Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III – will be selected with the first two picks.
As was theorized in that blog entry, QB-needy teams such as Cleveland, Miami and Seattle who miss out on QBs in free agency will be looking to upgrade their QB situations on draft day. With that being the case, those teams could opt to trade up to the Vikings slot in order to select Tannehill.
One aspect of this entire theory we didn’t mention was the possibility that any of those aforementioned teams who strike a deal with a QB in free agency (Peyton Manning, for example) might displace a QB on their roster, thus giving teams who are still looking to improve another option. For example, if the San Francisco 49ers sign Manning, that leaves Alex Smith as an alternative for other teams. If the Tennessee Titans sign Manning, that leaves Matt Hasselbeck as an alternative. None of this helps the Vikings, but I also think it won’t eliminate the chance that some team will want to trade up for the Vikings #3 overall pick.
Over the weekend, the 2nd-best free agent QB signed with one of the QB-needy teams identified above. The Seattle Seahawks signed Flynn, taking them off the menu of teams that might consider trading up to select Tannehill. The good news is, though, that the Seahawks signing of Flynn does not make available a new QB. Seattle is expected to retain last year’s starter (Tarvaris Jackson) and have a competition for the starting spot.
So where does that leave our theory on a robust market developing for the Vikings #3 overall pick? There’s still a good chance. As of right now, I’m pegging Cleveland and Miami as the two teams most likely to consider trading up to the Vikings spot for the right to select Tannehill. The Dolphins weren’t able to sign Flynn, and they will lose out on the Manning sweepstakes as well. As for Cleveland, they have Colt McCoy as their starter now, but it wouldn’t be a surprise to learn that they’re looking to upgrade. On top of that, Cleveland is in the 4th spot, so they won’t have to pay as much as Miami to move up and secure the rights to Tannehill.
There could be others, too. A lot can happen between now and draft day, plus you can never rule out the possibility of a surprise team emerging late in the process. If Denver misses out on Manning, could they be candidates to trade up for Tannehill? How about Arizona, Buffalo or Kansas City?
So as has been the case for months, the Vikings are in a great spot as holders of the #3 overall pick. And they have well over a month before the NFL draft to figure out how to maximize their great position. As explained last week, the ideal scenario is for the Browns to feel compelled to trade up one spot to block other teams further down in the 1st round from doing so, which will net the Vikings draft-pick compensation while moving them down just one spot so they can still get their player of choice.
Tags: 2012 NFL Draft
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 43 Comments »