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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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Cincinnati - LP: J. Broxton 1 FINAL
Pittsburgh - WP: T. Watson 2
Minnesota - LP: T. May 1 FINAL
Baltimore - WP: M. Gonzalez 9
NY Yankees - WP: C. Capuano 6 FINAL
Toronto - LP: M. Buehrle 3
Philadelphia - LP: J. Diekman 1 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: J. deGrom 4
Boston - WP: A. Ranaudo 8 FINAL
Tampa Bay - LP: C. Archer 4
Miami - LP: C. Hatcher 2 FINAL
Atlanta - WP: D. Carpenter 5
Cleveland - WP: D. Salazar 6 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: J. Vargas 1
Detroit - WP: J. Verlander 7 FINAL
Chicago WSox - LP: S. Carroll 1
Texas - WP: S. Baker 13 FINAL
Houston - LP: B. Oberholtzer 6
Chicago Cubs - WP: N. Ramirez 7 FINAL
St. Louis - LP: P. Neshek 2
Colorado - LP: R. Brothers 2 FINAL
Arizona - WP: B. Ziegler 5
Oakland - LP: J. Lester 0 FINAL
LA Angels - WP: J. Weaver 4
Los Angeles - LP: K. Correia 2 FINAL
San Diego - WP: T. Stauffer 3
Washington - WP: J. Zimmermann 8 FINAL
Seattle - LP: F. Hernandez 3
Milwaukee - LP: W. Peralta 2 FINAL
San Francisco - WP: R. Vogelsong 13
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
(21) Texas A&M 52 FINAL
(9) So Carolina 28
Wake Forest 10 FINAL
ULM 17
Boise State 13 FINAL
(18) Ole Miss 35
Tulane 31 FINAL
Tulsa 38
Rutgers 41 FINAL
Washington St 38
Weber State 14 FINAL
(19) Arizona State 45
Temple 37 FINAL
Vanderbilt 7
BYU 35 FINAL
Connecticut 10
(6) Jacksonville St 7 FINAL
(8) Michigan State 45
Bowling Green 31 FINAL
Western Ky 59
TX-San Antonio 27 FINAL
Houston 7
Colorado State 31 FINAL
Colorado 17
UNLV 13 FINAL
Arizona 58
Penn State 7:30 AM
UCF
Troy 11:00 AM
UAB
(7) UCLA 11:00 AM
Virginia
Western Mich 11:00 AM
Purdue
(5) Ohio State 11:00 AM
Navy
Appalachian St 11:00 AM
Michigan
Ga Southern 11:30 AM
NC State
Boston College 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
West Virginia 2:30 PM
(2) Alabama
Rice 2:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
(10) South Dakota St 2:30 PM
(24) Missouri
Fla Atlantic 2:30 PM
(22) Nebraska
California 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Marshall 2:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
UC Davis 3:00 PM
(11) Stanford
Arkansas 3:00 PM
(6) Auburn
(16) Clemson 4:30 PM
(12) Georgia
Liberty 5:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Ohio U 5:00 PM
Kent State
Louisiana Tech 6:00 PM
(4) Oklahoma
Idaho 6:00 PM
Florida
Stephen F Austin 6:10 PM
(20) Kansas State
Fresno State 6:30 PM
(15) USC
Southern Miss 6:30 PM
Miss State
Texas-El Paso 7:00 PM
New Mexico
North Texas 7:00 PM
Texas
(1) Florida State 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Utah State 8/31/14 6:00 PM
Tennessee
SMU 8/31/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
Miami-Florida 9/1/14 7:00 PM
Louisville
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
Houston 3 FINAL
Sporting Kansas City 1
Ottawa 10 FINAL
Montreal 20
Winnipeg 8/31/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Minnesota 71 FINAL
Phoenix 85
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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 Noon
Sep 14 - vs. New England Noon
Sep 21 - at New Orleans Noon
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pm
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pm
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit Noon
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo Noon
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay Noon
Nov 2 - vs. Washington Noon
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago Noon
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay Noon
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina Noon
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets Noon
Dec 14 - at Detroit Noon
Dec 21 - at Miami Noon
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago Noon

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