Kwesi Adofo-Mensah's First Move: Vikings Trade Back From 12 to 32 With Lions

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Heading into the first round of the NFL draft tonight, we knew the Vikings trading back was a possibility. What we didn’t expect was a trade with a division rival that moves the Vikings all the way back to the end of the first round.

Kwesi Adofo-Mensah’s first draft move as Minnesota’s general manager is to trade the No. 12 and 46 picks to the Detroit Lions for picks No. 32, 34, and 66. With the 12th pick, the Lions selected Alabama wide receiver Jameson Williams.

This is a stunner. With players like Williams, Kyle Hamilton, Trent McDuffie, Jordan Davis, and Jermaine Johnson on the board, the Vikings elected to move back 20 spots. They now have two picks in a three-pick span in the 30s, but also had to move back from 46 to 66 to make it happen.

By the Rich Hill trade value chart, the Vikings lost this trade by 40 points (435 points gained, 475 lost). But by Pro Football Focus’s chart, the Vikings won this trade.

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This is a fascinating decision. The Vikings passed on some potential game-changing players, but went from having two picks in the top 50 to having three in the top 70 (and four in the top 80).

The Vikings now have picks 32, 34, 66, and 77 coming up. That should allow them to add plenty of talent at cornerback, defensive end, wide receiver, interior offensive line, or whatever position ends up working out with the way the board falls.

This could work out successfully if the Vikings do well with those picks. But it’ll also be worth questioning in the future if (and, likely, when) at least one of the top-20 picks the Vikings passed on turns into a star.

Much more to come from Adofo-Mensah and the Vikings.

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