On Friday morning, as the Minnesota Vikings were preparing for the second and third rounds of the NFL Draft, General Manager Rick Spielman wanted to add one final piece to “a lot of research” the team had done on the background of former Florida State running back Dalvin Cook.
Spielman picked up the phone to talk with Cook about the off-field issues that concerned the Vikings and other NFL teams.
‘We felt very, very confident that not only is he a great football player, but he’s the right fit for the Minnesota Vikings’
“I had a personal conversation with him Friday morning for 45 minutes, rehashing everything that we’ve been through a hundred times and felt very, very confident that not only is he a great football player, but he’s the right fit for the Minnesota Vikings,” he told Bruce Murray and Brady Quinn on the SiriusXM Blitz.
The call convinced Spielman that the Vikings should make the trade they did with the Cincinnati Bengals to move up to the 41st spot to select Cook.
‘When you have a talented player as Dalvin Cook fall into the second round, screw the need’
“We wanted to be active. I knew, going into it, kind of the game plan, knowing not having a first-round pick, but we’re counting (quarterback Sam) Bradford as our first-round pick this year,” Spielman said. “But when Dalvin Cook started to fall, it a little bit caught us — I wouldn’t say off-guard — but it was unexpected because I didn’t think he would fall in the first round. So there’s no question about his talent on the field. And we’ve done a lot of research, that off-the-field stuff that was out there.
“So we wanted to be aggressive and we were able, trading up, to get him. I think, when you have a talented player as Dalvin Cook fall into the second round, screw the need. We’re going to go after best player available, because he was sticking out like a sore thumb on top of our board. So I wanted to go get the best player available, because eventually if you follow the best player available and you’re right, those guys can make a significant impact on your roster.”
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