Matt Vensel is in his first year at the Star Tribune after covering the Ravens for the Baltimore Sun for six years. He is a Pittsburgh native and a Penn State grad. Follow him at @mattvensel.


Mark Craig has covered the NFL for 23 years, and the Vikings since 2003 for the Star Tribune. He is one of 44 Pro Football Hall of Fame selectors. Follow him at @markcraignfl.


Master Tesfatsion is the Star Tribune’s digital Vikings writer. He is a 2013 graduate of Arizona State and worked for mlb.com before arriving in Minneapolis. Follow him at @masterstrib.


Vikings introduce three newest playmakers

Posted by: Updated: April 26, 2013 - 5:04 PM
This afternoon, the Vikings unveiled not one, not two, but three new draft picks. A day after pulling off a trifecta no one saw coming, the organization was left without any picks for Friday night’s second or third rounds. But that was just fine with General Manager Rick Spielman, who was still glowing over Thursday night’s additions of defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd, cornerback Xavier Rhodes and receiver Cordarrelle Patterson.
 
That trio all flew together Friday morning from New York City, where they got their welcome-to-the-NFL hugs from Commissioner Roger Goodell, to the Twin Cities, where they were introduced as Vikings.
 
“I introduced them to our staff and you could feel that energy and all that momentum,” Spielman said. “I think building off of last year’s energy and being able to accomplish what we’ve accomplished so far it exciting. You’ve got the new uniforms. And we’ve got the new stadium coming. There are a lot of positives here in Minnesota and we’re looking to continue to build on that.”
 
After hitting rock bottom in 2011 with a 3-13 faceplant, the Vikings rallied with a strong 2012 draft and used that to aid a 10-win rebound campaign. Now they’ll add three first-round picks to a playoff team, an amazing twist to which Spielman was still trying to digest the significance.
 
He certainly had no second thoughts about all that happened Thursday with Floyd falling to the Vikings at 23, Rhodes still being available at 25 and Patterson sitting on the board so late in Round 1 that the organization spent four total draft picks to charge up to the 29th slot.
 
For those wondering whether the Vikings spent too much to get Patterson, Spielman pointed out that they basically flipped their second-round pick at 52 into the 29th pick while also giving away their final of three seventh-round picks, which is something of a throwaway slot. The GM also stockpiles extra picks each year in order to have the flexibility to make such moves. Which is why surrendering a third-round pick and one of two fourth-rounders didn’t seem to hurt so much.
 
Said Spielman: “If you were to say, in a normal draft, we had a first-round pick, a second-round pick and a third-round pick, is there any chance of us getting these three players? No way. So to be aggressive and to get three first-round picks, which I have never done in my entire career, it was kind of a unique opportunity that presented itself.”
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Pittsburgh - LP: F. Liriano 0 FINAL
Cincinnati - WP: J. Cueto 4
Tampa Bay - LP: J. Odorizzi 0 FINAL
Baltimore - WP: M. Gonzalez 3
Chicago Cubs - LP: J. Hammel 0 FINAL
NY Yankees - WP: M. Tanaka 3
St. Louis - LP: J. Kelly 1 FINAL
Milwaukee - WP: W. Peralta 5
NY Mets - WP: D. Gee 5 FINAL
Arizona - LP: B. McCarthy 2
Atlanta - WP: J. Teheran 1 FINAL
Philadelphia - LP: C. Lee 0
Chicago Cubs 0 Top 9th Inning
NY Yankees 2
Cleveland 3 Top 9th Inning
Detroit 2
Washington - WP: D. Storen 6 FINAL
Miami - LP: M. Dunn 3
Seattle 2 Bottom 8th Inning
Texas 0
Boston 1 Bottom 6th Inning
Chicago WSox 1
Kansas City 2 Top 7th Inning
Houston 4
Toronto 0 Postponed
Minnesota 0
Oakland 0 Top 1st Inning
LA Angels 0
Colorado 0 Top 1st Inning
San Diego 0
Los Angeles - P. Maholm 9:15 PM
San Francisco - R. Vogelsong
Chicago 86 FINAL
Charlotte 91
Indiana 101 FINAL
Orlando 86
Atlanta 109 4th Qtr 0:14
Milwaukee 100
Dallas 86 4th Qtr 6:45
Memphis 82
Detroit 105 4th Qtr 4:26
Oklahoma City 97
Houston 100 FINAL
New Orleans 105
LA Lakers 113 FINAL
San Antonio 100
Brooklyn 85 4th Qtr 0:15
Cleveland 114
Philadelphia 89 4th Qtr 7:44
Miami 79
Utah 107 4th Qtr 1:00
Minnesota 105
Washington 116 4th Qtr 1:27
Boston 97
Toronto 87 4th Qtr 4:38
New York 85
Golden State 9:30 PM
Denver
LA Clippers 9:30 PM
Portland
Phoenix 9:30 PM
Sacramento
Montreal 4 1st OT 12:01
Tampa Bay 4
Columbus 3 3rd Prd
Pittsburgh 4
Dallas 9:00 PM
Anaheim
Philadelphia 1 FINAL
Red Bull New York 2
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2013 preseason     
Aug 9 - vs. Houston 7 pmX27-13
Aug 16 - at Buffalo 6 pmX20-16
Aug 25 - at San Francisco 7 pmX34-14
Aug 29 - vs. Tennessee 7 pmX24-23
2013 regular season     
Sep 8 - at Detroit NoonX34-24
Sep 15 - at Chicago NoonX31-30
Sep 22 - vs. Cleveland NoonX31-27
Sep 29 - vs. Pittsburgh (in London) NoonX34-27
Oct 6 - Bye
Oct 13 - vs. Carolina NoonX35-10
Oct 21 - at. NY Giants 7:40 pmX23-7
Oct 27 - vs. Green Bay 7:30 pmX44-31
Nov 3 - at Dallas NoonX27-23
Nov 7 - vs. Washington 7:25 pmX34-27
Nov 17 - at Seattle 3:25 pmX41-20
Nov. 24 - at Green Bay Noon26-26
Dec 1 - vs. Chicago NoonX23-20
Dec 8 - at Baltimore NoonX29-26
Dec 15 - vs. Philadelphia NoonX48-30
Dec 22 - at Cincinnati NoonX42-14
Dec 29 - vs. Detroit NoonX14-13

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