Kwesi Adofo-Mensah : Draft Strategy

April 18, 2022

The 2022 NFL Draft will be the first draft that Kwesi Adofo-Mensah will have the reigns for as the General Manager. I don’t have data to work with where Adofo-Menasah was in charge of a draft. However, there are some hints that can be taken from Adofo-Mensah’s previous teams. I used the tendencies of the previous teams he worked for and pre-draft visits to formulate what Adofo-Mensah might do.

Kwesi Adofo-Mensah : Draft Strategy

Draft Tendencies

I looked at the draft tendencies of the San Fransisco 49ers and Cleveland Browns during Adofo-Mensah’s time with both teams. The first thing that jumps out for me is the number of picks used on three positions.

  • Wide Reciever: 11 picks used, average pick 3rd-4th round. Zero first-round picks.
  • EDGE: Eigh picks used, average pick 1st-2nd round. Three first-round picks.
  • Cornerback: 15 picks used, average pick 3rd round. Three first-round picks.

Given the data above the 49ers and Browns spent a large amount of draft capital on WR, EDGE, and CB during Kwesi-Adofo Mensah’stime. Wide receiver was addressed in middle rounds most frequently. Edge was in the first two rounds with three of the eight in the first round. Corner was the most picked position with 15 total picks with the most drafted in the first three rounds.

From this data, it’s clear that the two teams Adofo-Mensah was with invested heavily in WR, CB, and EDGE. Now let’s take a look a the pre-draft visits the Vikings had so far and see if it lines up.

Pre-draft Player Visits

I wrote an article providing a list of visits the Vikings have had so far. Of the more than 30 players that have visited the Vikings prior to the draft 10 were EDGE/DL, seven were wide receivers, and five were defensive backs. It’s clear that they are showing the most interest in the EDGE/DL players available. Next were wide receivers but most of the visits were mid to late-round picks. EDGE/DL were typically higher projected picks including George Karlaftis.

Notable Positions With Few Visits

The Vikings have a need at center and offensive guard. However, the visits they’ve had haven’t been the offensive line. Thus far I’ve only been able to track one offensive linemen, center prospect, Cole Strange. The Vikings signed Chris Reed and Jesse Davis who both figure to be in the mix for the starting right guard spot. They also have last year’s third-round pick, Wyatt Davis who they hope will compete for the spot.

At center, they still have Garrett Bradbury, who’s entering his fourth season. Bradbury has been the target of negativity the past two seasons. PFF rated Bradbury as one of the worst centers in the league. I don’t think he’s lived up to the first-round pick that was used to draft him. However, after reviewing his 2021 film I disagree to a degree. He’s not the 28th center in the league, he’s actually better than that. It’s far to say he’s slightly below average, or about the 20th in the league. Still, he’s not good enough that the Vikings wouldn’t be looking to upgrade and they may view Strange as an option and offers multi-positional flexibility.

So what does this all mean?

I believe the data above indicates they’re looking at EDGE/DL, and in the first two rounds. They’re also looking at a wide receiver in the mid to late rounds. They’ve visited with several speedy WR in the mid to late round. Even though they signed Chandon Sullivan and resigned Patrick Peterson, it also appears they’re likely to take CB in the first two rounds.

Given his previous teams focusing on EDGE, CB, and WR and the visits they’ve had I’m expecting the first two picks o be EDGE and CB and a WR in the mid to late rounds. It seems that Kwesi Adofo-Mensah values these three positions highly.