NFL Insider Floats a Vikings Double Trade into Top-3 on Draft Night

Photo courtesy of the Minnesota Vikings

The Minnesota Vikings are trying to work a trade up into the top-5 of the NFL Draft, which is set to take place exactly one month from today. They currently own the No. 11 and No. 23 picks and there isn’t an insider you can find covering the NFL who thinks the Vikings will use those picks to do anything other than move up… possibly as high as No. 3 overall.

That’s where the New England Patriots currently sit. Previously, it was believed the Pats were determined to draft their own QB of the future, at No. 3. But on Sunday, New England coach Jerod Mayo made it very clear they have changed their minds and are now open to moving off of that spot, if the right package comes along. NFL insider Dan Graziano (ESPN) proposed a trade up to No. 3 for Minnesota that looks like this:

The Vikings send Nos. 11 and 23 and a 2025 first-round pick for No. 3.

This is pretty straightforward — three first-round picks for your quarterback of the future, whoever that is at No. 3. The Patriots, meanwhile, would get serious draft capital to spark their rebuild.

Dan Graziano (ESPN+)

There’s a problem with the above trade scenario, however. For a team like New England, that desperately needs a franchise changing offensive talent, the thought of moving all the way from pick No. 3 to No. 11 is a scary proposition, even if Minnesota were to offer the type of no-brainer package they can’t say no to. So what’s the fix?

Minnesota Vikings thinking about a double trade on draft night?

kwesi adofo-mensah Minnesota Vikings
Photo: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Well, Graziano (who has been very plugged into the Vikings’ plans all offseason) dropped an interesting theory (one that feels very informed) in two other Vikings draft day scenarios he mapped out Monday morning. And, should the Vikings decide it’s the No. 3 overall draft slot that they covet, his theoretical double-trade seems to solve any concerns New England might have about dropping eight spots.

Instead of just sending (3) first rounders to the Patriots (11, 23, ‘2025 1st) as he laid out above, general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah would swing an initial trade that leapfrogs Minnesota into (or around) the top-5. Then, a second move that pushes them up to two more slots. First, he lays out what it would look like with the Chargers (No. 5). The Vikings give up the same amount of draft capital and the Patriots only have to move down two slots.

The Vikings send Nos. 11 and 23 for No. 5 [Chargers] — then send No. 5 and a 2025 first-round pick to the Patriots for No. 3.

In this scenario, the Patriots wouldn’t be fully in love with the QB who’s there at the third slot but wouldn’t want to move back too far and risk missing out on all of the QBs. This is the same price Minnesota paid in the Patriots scenario above, but the picks are dispersed differently. The Chargers can find the receiver they need at No. 11.

Dan Graziano (ESPN+)

In reality, if the Patriots have anxiety about moving down too many slots, the Minnesota Vikings will have to fix it by sending them more draft picks. That’s why a double-trade makes so much sense. If Kwesi can find a willing middle man for the first move, they won’t have to comp in extra picks to get New England to take a deal.

Related: Vikings Over/Under Win Total Opens at Shockingly Low Number; Bottom of NFC North

But Graziano doesn’t just have the Chargers as a team that could help facilitate such a bold move. He also picks out the New York Giants (No. 6) as another possible slot where the Vikings could do the exact same thing. Same picks and everything.

The Vikings send Nos. 11 and 23 for No. 6 — then send No. 6 and a 2025 first-round pick to the Patriots for No. 3.

Same scenario as above. The trick is making sure the Patriots are on board with the second part of the deal before Minnesota makes the move up to No. 6. Because if not, another team can still jump the Vikings to No. 4 or No. 5 and snag the Vikings’ guy. Like the Chargers in the above scenario, the Giants could get a receiver at No. 11.

Dan Graziano (ESPN+)

Look, I don’t want to speak for Dan Graziano. I’ve never met the guy. And maybe… just maybe, he came up with this genius trade theory all by himself or stole it from a commenter on Twitter. But Graziano’s job isn’t to make up random trade theories.

Related: Commanders Taking Trade Calls at No. 2 in Case Vikings Offer Herschel Walker 2.0 Package

He’s an insider. He scoops unknown information from sources across the NFL… and he’s been shoveling out quite a bit of Vikings scoopage all offseason. And now, one day after his colleague reported that the Patriots are openly available to trading the No. 3 overall pick, he drops this genius trade idea…? Sure, believe that if you want. Me, I expect this double-trade idea to pick up steam over the next week or two. We’ll see.

Mentioned in this article:

More About: