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.


Washington State safety Deone Bucannon to visit Vikings

Posted by: Master Tesfatsion Updated: April 16, 2014 - 9:23 AM

Washington State strong safety Deone Bucannon is the latest name that will attend the Vikings’ “Top 30” event, which starts today. Bucannon will visit on Thursday, according to an NFL source.

Some names that will also attend include UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr, Louisville linebacker Preston Brown, Buffalo linebacker Khalil Mack, Boise State defensive end/linebacker Demarcus Lawrence and North Dakota State offensive lineman Billy Turner.

Bucannon would be a good fit with the Vikings and appears to be a Day 2 pick. While Jamarca Sanford is returning, Andrew Sendejo and Kurt Coleman should have a shot to compete for Sanford's starting strong safety spot. Harrison Smith returns as well at free safety.

During the second half of last season, the Bengals used a three safety rotation under Mike Zimmer. Chris Crocker, who signed as a cornerback, shifted over to safety. It’s unknown whether Zimmer will implement that with the Vikings given the amount of injuries the Bengals had on defense at the time.

Back to Bucannon though, he was a first-team All-American last season. There have questions about his ability to drop in coverage, but he was impressive during Senior Bowl week. Bucannon has been known as an explosive hitter that also forced here fumbles last year. Bucannon had 114 tackles last season and six interceptions.

Listed at 6-1 and 211 pounds, Bucannon finished in the top three in every individual workout at the Combine among safeties.

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