Even though the 6-4 Minnesota Vikings have blown skeptics away in 2012, there are still plenty of holes that need to be filled once the season is over and the off-season has arrived. A great opportunity to fill them is via the 2013 NFL Draft.
One of their biggest holes remains at wide receiver, where the Vikings boast almost no starting-caliber talent behind the electrifying Percy Harvin. While their No. 1 scoring threat has done a tremendous job of carrying the load for the Minnesota passing attack, Harvin still needs a legitimate No. 2 receiver who can take some of the pressure off of his shoulders.
That’s where a talent like USC wide receiver Robert Woods comes in.
Likely to have an early-twenties pick this upcoming April, the Vikings could be in prime position to land Woods, one of the 2013 class’ best wide receiver options. Although his draft stock has slipped a little with the emergence of sophomore spark plug Marquise Lee, there’s no denying that Woods is still a serious NFL talent.
What Woods would bring to the table for the Vikings is reliable hands, great route-running, and the ability to pick up massive YAC yards. Throughout his time with the Trojans, he has done a terrific job of making something out of nothing and consistently finds ways to get open against the best secondaries that the PAC-12 has to offer.
With Woods, quarterback Christian Ponder wouldn’t be left with only one reliable receiver to throw to. Time and time again, the USC pass-catcher makes acrobatic grabs look routine. He uses his size and frame well to box out defenders and is willing to make the tough catch in traffic. Occasionally, Woods will suffer from the concentration drop, but that’s a fixable flaw.
To top it all off, Woods has seen massive improvement as a blocker this season. Especially with the offensive focus turning towards Lee, Woods has spent a large chunk of his time throwing blocks down field and learning to make an impact without the ball in his hands. Imagine what his blocking combined with Harvin’s home run abilities could lead to for the Vikings’ passing attack.
Woods is the type of player who needs the ball in his hands, especially when the game is on the line. He’s the type of smart, instinctive wide receiver who will do anything to win, and he fits the mold that Vikings GM Rick Spielman has set with his 2012 draft class.
If Woods is still available when the Vikings are on the clock, he better be a consideration to join Harvin and form one of the most explosive wide receiver tandems in the NFL.