10 worst Vikings draft picks since 2000
The Minnesota Vikings are entering the 2023 NFL draft hoping to grow their team for the future. Each year, it’s a time of hope and projecting out the future of your team.
There are plenty of positives with past Vikings drafts. They have drafted multiple Hall of Fame players and have seen a lot of success in the later rounds.
Despite all the success they have had in the draft, not everything is sunshine and rainbows. There have been plenty of misses and I highlighted the 10 biggest ones since 2000.
10. Greg Childs
AP Photo/Genevieve Ross
2012, fourth round pick, No. 134
The Vikings had three fourth round picks in 2012 and took a chance on an often-injured receiver from Arkansas in Childs. Unfortunately, he tore both patella tendons during his first training camp and never played a down in the NFL. He was waived in March of 2014 and had a failed tryout with the Jacksonville Jaguars and spent time with the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts.
9. Chazz Surratt
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2021, third-round pick, No. 78
The Vikings had four third-round picks in the 2021 NFL draft and it was a chance to build up their depth with inexpensive players for the next few years. Surratt was taken at 78 with only two years of experience at the position after playing quarterback for two years at North Carolina. He couldn’t shed a block to save his life and it got him released after just one season.
8. Wyatt Davis
AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn
2021, third-round pick, No. 86
The third of the Vikings third-round picks, Davis could never get out of his own way. He got hurt during training camp, which he reportedly came in overeweight. Davis suited up for just six games in 2021 for the Vikings and was released in August of 2022. It was quite the fall from grace for Davis who was projected to be a first-round pick if he came out in the 2020 NFL draft.
7. Cordarrelle Patterson
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2013, first round pick, No. 29
Yes, Patterson has been a first-team, All-Pro as a returner, but taking a player that maxed out as a return specialist for you in the first round with a massive trade up lands Patterson on this list. The Vikings traded their second, third, fourth and seventh round picks to the New England Patriots to select Patterson and they couldn’t figure out how to best use him. Considering the capital given up to acquire Patterson, this is why he’s one of the worst Vikings draft picks since 2000.
6. Jeff Gladney
AP Photo/Duane Burleson
2020, first round pick, No. 31
This is one of the more difficult picks to quantify. It ends up being at six and not higher because talent wasn’t the issue for his talent. He had flashes of being a really good cornerback. The issue was his off the field ended up getting him released after one season. Only playing for the Vikings for one season makes it a failed pick. Unfortunately, we will never get his redemption story as he tragically passed away in a car accident.
5. Scott Crichton
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The year before the struck gold with Danielle Hunter, the Vikings drafted a hyper athlete at defensive end in Crichton. He wasn’t good during his two years as a Vikings. In 21 career games, Crichton compiled 10 tackles and one tackle for loss. For a player that was hyped up, he didn’t live up to it at all.
4. Michael Boireau
2000, second round pick, No. 56
There is no way to positively spin this. Boireau was a complete bust. Mostly due to injuries, Boireau never saw the field for the Vikings during his two seasons on the roster. He was the third of three offensive lineman that the Vikings drafted to start the 2000 NFL draft with Chris Hovan and Fred Robbins before him. To not get a single snap out of a player drafted at 56th overall is atrocious.
3. Erasmus James
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2005, first round pick, No. 18
The draft right after the Randy Moss trade was supposed to help grow this team exponentially, especially with two first-round picks. James ended up being the last defensive end the Vikings selected in the first or second round. James had four sacks in his rookie season and only one over his next three.
2. Laquon Treadwell
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports
2016, first round pick, No. 23
The Vikings needed a wide receiver and wanted Josh Doctson from TCU, but he went one pick earlier to the Washington Commanders. Then offensive coordinator Norv Turner wanted his Michael Irvin, but it never worked out. The failure of Treadwell ended up seeing the emercence of Adam Thielen, but missing out on a first-round pick set this team back.
1. Christian Ponder
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports
2011, first round pick, No. 12
The Vikings were desperate for a quarterback going into the 2011 NFL draft. There were three quarterbacks at the top of the class, but all three of them went before the Vikings picked at 12th overall. They famously panicked and just took the next quarterback. Unfortunately, the Vikings took a guy who wasn’t a first-round caliber player. Outside of eight games in 2012 where Ponder showed some flashes, he was a complete bust and was benched early on in 2013 for good.
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