3 first round mistakes the Vikings can’t afford to make

Justin Jefferson, Minnesota Vikings

Justin Jefferson, Minnesota Vikings. (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images)

Much can happen between now and the 2023 NFL Draft, but the Minnesota Vikings cannot afford to mess this up

No matter what you have read or heard, the Minnesota Vikings do indeed have a roster that’s still ready to win the NFC North.

In fact, they’re in much better position than they were a year ago, and last season they finished 13-4 atop the division. This offseason, the organization has gotten rid of some of the aging veterans, especially on the defensive side of the ball, in effort to improve a giant area of weakness.

Offensively, there’s still your Justin Jefferson-led unit featuring Kirk Cousins, T.J. Hockenson and, presumably, Alexander Mattson. This offense has plenty of firepower, regardless of how so many Vikings fans want to criticize Cousins, specifically.

Going into the 2023 NFL Draft, the team definitely has areas they can improve and should focus on. But, with the roster they have in place, they have to be careful not to make a few particular mistakes and do what needs to be done to put an even better team together going into the 2023 season.

First round mistakes the Minnesota Vikings cannot make in the 2023 NFL Draft: Reaching on a wide receiver

After letting go of Adam Thielen, the Vikings are counting more so on fourth-year wideout K.J. Osborn this coming year. But, he’s also in the final year of his rookie deal. Not to mention, the team needs more weapons than just Jefferson and Osborn.

Fortunately, there are some talented names likely to go in the first round and the Vikings could have a shot at one with pick 23.

If Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Quentin Johnston, Zay Flowers and Jordan Addison are gone, though, the Vikings cannot be pressured into taking a wide receiver. Any of those four would be excellent picks at no. 23, but beyond them, Minnesota can’t afford to reach.

Josh Downs or Tank Dell could be the next two off the board, and they are by no means first-round talents. Even Tennessee’s Jaylin Hyatt has been mocked in the first at times, but he isn’t worth that pick. If the top four are gone, the Vikings have to shift.

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