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Friday (Manziel, Bridgewater and starting over) edition: Wha' Happened?

Posted by: Michael Rand under Vikings Updated: May 9, 2014 - 10:04 AM

 

On paper, the first round of the NFL draft unfolded beautifully for the Vikings -- and about like many of us would have predicted. They were able to extort an extra fifth-round pick from Cleveland to move one spot from 8 to 9. They took who we assume they thought was the best defensive player available at that spot. And then they traded back into the first round late, emboldened by the extra fifth and extra third (from the Percy Harvin trade) to get one of the three quarterbacks that had been discussed as being in the upper tier of this year's draft. In some ways, the NFL draft is very much about getting good value. And the Vikings got good value.

 

In other ways, though, the NFL draft -- especially in the first round -- is about hitting a home run. It's about finding that special talent who can elevate your team to a new level.

We thought the offensive player in this draft who defined that was Johnny Manziel. We made no secret about our desire for the Vikings to draft him -- for journalistically selfish reasons because he's a great story, for practical reasons because we thought he was that special talent and for visceral reasons because it would just be enjoyable to watch him play.

The Vikings, of course, had a chance to take Manziel at No. 8 ... and again at No. 9 after the Cleveland trade. They chose Anthony Barr instead. Reports suggested they were trying to trade back up to No. 22, presumably to take Manziel at that spot, before Cleveland edged them out. The Browns still had a lower first-round pick to offer, so it makes sense that they would win that battle.

And then the Vikings, of course, ended up swapping their second- and fourth-round picks for the final pick in the first round to take Teddy Bridgewater.

This sets us up, fair or unfair, for years of debate and progress-monitoring. The Vikings could have had either quarterback, and Bridgewater is the one they ended up getting. This made plenty of people happy, and we can understand their position. Bridgewater was once thought of as a candidate to be the No. 1 overall pick. If his stock fell just from one bad showing at his pro day, it's fairly ridiculous. He very well could be a better pro than Manziel. Nobody knows. That's the beauty and curse of the draft -- what makes it fun, what makes it maddening, what makes it so important.

But we also know others who think Bridgewater has a low NFL ceiling and that the Vikings messed up badly. Again, we don't really know. What we think about Manziel is this: the NFL in 2014 is often about improvisation and playmaking ability. The ability to read through progressions is big, but taking a play that shouldn't work and making it work is even bigger, to us. Manziel has that. He will continue to have it in the NFL. The Vikings could have had that, and they lost it. Maybe the fact that we value such a thing so much is more a reflection of us instead of anything else.

Time will tell. Bridgewater is far more than a consolation prize. He could be great. It's far from crazy to think history will judge the Vikings as geniuses instead of fools. As with any QB draft, though, this one will be remembered and followed with a great intensity.

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Team Irvin 7:15 PM
Team Carter
Miami 46 2nd Qtr 1:30
Chicago 36
Oklahoma City 2:30 PM
Cleveland
Dallas 5:00 PM
New Orleans
Indiana 5:00 PM
Orlando
LA Clippers 5:00 PM
Phoenix
Minnesota 5:00 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 6:00 PM
Toronto
Milwaukee 6:00 PM
San Antonio
Boston 7:00 PM
Golden State
Washington 7:00 PM
Denver
Houston 8:30 PM
LA Lakers
Team Toews 4:00 PM
Team Foligno
South Florida 45 2nd Half 3:49
Connecticut 54
Boston College 26 2nd Half
Georgia Tech 24
Virginia 30 2nd Half
Virginia Tech 27
Indiana 18 1st Half 11:55
Ohio State 15
Stony Brook 1:00 PM
Binghamton
Cincinnati 1:00 PM
UCF
Maine 1:00 PM
Hartford
Monmouth 1:00 PM
Manhattan
Fairfield 1:00 PM
Marist
Rowan 1:00 PM
Princeton
St Bonaventure 1:00 PM
Rhode Island
Duke 1:00 PM
St Johns
Saint Peters 1:00 PM
Siena
Drake 1:00 PM
Wichita State
Vermont 1:00 PM
UMass Lowell
Seton Hall 2:00 PM
Butler
NJIT 2:05 PM
South Alabama
Northern Iowa 3:00 PM
Illinois State
Louisville 3:00 PM
Pittsburgh
UMBC 3:30 PM
Albany
Niagara 3:30 PM
Iona
Notre Dame 5:30 PM
NC State
Belmont 5:30 PM
Tennessee St
Creighton 6:00 PM
Villanova
Northwestern 6:30 PM
Maryland
Washington 7:30 PM
Utah
Senior-North 34 FINAL
Senior-South 13
St Johns 69 FINAL
Villanova 81
Seton Hall 89 1st OT 3:23
Georgetown 85
Arkansas 48 2nd Half 2:40
Florida 59
Maine 32 2nd Half
UMBC 20
Vanderbilt 32 2nd Half
Alabama 24
Lafayette 25 2nd Half
Lehigh 28
UCF 1:00 PM
SMU
Utah 1:00 PM
Washington
James Madison 1:00 PM
Coll of Charleston
Delaware 1:00 PM
Drexel
Hofstra 1:00 PM
William & Mary
Hartford 1:00 PM
Albany
Binghamton 1:00 PM
Stony Brook
Towson 1:00 PM
UNC-Wilmington
Wake Forest 1:00 PM
(17) Florida State
Georgia Tech 1:00 PM
Virginia
(22) Georgia 1:00 PM
(5) Tennessee
Drake 1:00 PM
Evansville
Iona 1:00 PM
Canisius
Fairfield 1:00 PM
Monmouth
Northwestern 1:00 PM
Penn State
Wisconsin 1:00 PM
Michigan State
Ohio State 1:00 PM
Purdue
Northern Iowa 1:05 PM
Indiana State
Butler 1:30 PM
Xavier
Creighton 2:00 PM
Marquette
Providence 2:00 PM
DePaul
Northeastern 2:00 PM
Elon
(2) Connecticut 2:00 PM
Cincinnati
Oregon 2:00 PM
Arizona
Bradley 2:00 PM
Loyola-Chicago
NC State 2:00 PM
(23) Syracuse
(7) Maryland 2:00 PM
Indiana
Illinois State 2:05 PM
Missouri State
Colorado 3:00 PM
Washington St
Tulane 3:00 PM
South Florida
(14) Kentucky 3:00 PM
Missouri
(9) Oregon State 3:00 PM
(13) Arizona State
Vermont 3:30 PM
UMass Lowell
Iowa State 3:30 PM
(8) Texas
Southern Ill 3:45 PM
Wichita State
(15) Duke 4:00 PM
(12) North Carolina
Miami-Florida 4:00 PM
(4) Louisville
(21) Minnesota 4:15 PM
(25) Rutgers
California 5:00 PM
UCLA
(11) Stanford 7:00 PM
USC
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9

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