Coach Brad Childress and other members of the Vikings staff are scheduled to get an up-close look at quarterback Tim Tebow, center Maurkice Pouncey and other draft eligible players from Florida this weekend, according to NFL sources.
Childress will be the featured speaker at the Florida Football coaches clinic on Friday in Gainesville, Fla. The trip will give Childress a chance to watch a spring practice session at Florida and also workout the draft-eligible players from the school before returning to the Twin Cities.
That list is expected to include Tebow; Pouncey; linebacker Brandon Spikes; defensive ends Carlos Dunlap and Jermaine Cunningham; safety Major Wright; and wide receiver Riley Cooper. Of course, the fact Tebow will be among this group will draw the most attention.
Childress has not hidden the fact he thinks highly of Tebow, who spent time after the college season working on his mechanics to improve his release. There remains uncertainty where Tebow will be selected, although his stock does seem to be on the rise. Tebow led the Gators to one national championship and won the Heisman trophy in 2007.
Childress said at the NFL owners meetings last month in Orlando, Fla., that he had talked to Gators coach Urban Meyer and former Gator and current Viking Percy Harvin about Tebow and both gave the quarterback high marks.
"I have not had a chance to really pull him apart [on tape]," Childress said in March. "And I have not seen his latest workout. I was not down there. I just think he’s the ultimate competitor. And it’s kind of fun to talk to Percy about him and Urban about him. From that aspect, shoot, he’s an A-plus."
Rick Spielman, the Vikings vice president of player personnel, attended Florida's Pro Day workout in March, so this will be a chance for Childress to get an up-close look at Tebow's skills.
The Vikings hold the 30th pick in this month's draft. They have been projected to take Pouncey in the first round in some mock drafts.