Leading up to this month's draft, Purple Jesus Diaries will take time analyzing potential draft targets for the Minnesota Vikings. With our cutting edge video technology, long hours spent scouting literally DOZENS of college players from our couch, and insight from Vikings meathead CapitalJsCorner, we're give you details you never even dreamed of from prospects that could help the Vikings in 2013. Based on the team needs established in our offensive and defensive team reviews, we present to you the 2013 Who Ya Gonna Draft? feature …
JOHNTHAN Banks? Johnthan. Have you ever seen so many consonants in a row in a name before? Outrageous. On the other hand, BANKS, is a badass last name. BANKS, BITCH. I HOUSE YOUR MONEY. Or something. Even better? He went to college at Mississippi State, located in Starksville, Mississippi, which is also called STARKVEGAS, which is totally awesome. Point being, even before you know anything about Johnthan Banks (he's listed as a 6'2" CB with a 34 inch vertical and a 4.71 40 speed which, shit, doesn't actually sound that good), you're already interested in him. So let's learn more!
Capital Js Take:
Banks should be available at the end of the first round. Depending on what team he lands with, he could make the switch to Safety in the NFL. The same thing was said about Cedric Griffin, but he turned out to be a good fit (pre-injury) for our scheme. Most mocks have him going to SF at 31, so depending on how things shake out, we could look to trade back if he’s the guy we target, much like we did for Chris Cook.
OK, maybe he sounds a bit slow, but how did he actually stack up in his strengths and weaknesses as seen by the scouts from NFL.com? Let's check! First, the GOOD stuff, then the BAD stuff. Good stuff here:
|Height, length and competitive nature could make him a starter. Good hands for the interception, can high-point passes and make difficult catches with superb concentration. Effective on jump balls in end zone and knocks away passes from behind without interfering. Does not give up on plays even as receiver is catching the ball. Former safety is not shy of making contact, solid tackler when coming downhill. Quick to attack running plays, even when playing off-coverage, making it tough for receivers to get a hand on him. Effective as a blitzer against the run and pass. Rips at the ball whether making a tackle downfield or attacking the quarterback in the backfield. Excellent mirror and change of direction skills. Not asked to play a lot of press coverage and hes not very strong, but he has a quick disruptive jam.|
And now bad stuff (or at least, "less good" stuff):
|Getting bigger, but still quite thin, especially in his lower half. Stronger backs can still carry him when they have a head of steam and physical receivers can block him on the edge and separate from him easily downfield. Plays a bit tall, will miss tackles coming in high and lacks strength to arm tackle receivers. Does not have great straight-line speed, will not recover once losing a step. Rarely backpedals, asked to play mostly off-coverages and opens his hips early to prevent getting beat deep. Inconsistent looking for and finding the ball in the air, miss-timing jumps and taking bad angles to the ball. Can get caught peeking in the backfield.|
Dammit NFL.com, make up your mind. He's either good at going up and getting the ball or he's not. One or the other. Your pussy footing so much in your analysis I'm starting to develop a foot fetish.
Banks is actually someone the Vikings could target. He's expected to go in the late first, as Capital J mentioned, but with his slower 40 time I could see him slipping into the 2nd round as well. CB is obviously a huge priority for the Vikings going into the draft, but I don't know if there are any players in the 20+ range that the Vikings like enough to spend a first round pick on. And I'm pretty sure they'll keep both first round picks, going WR and LB – in any order – during the first round, with CB or DT targeted in the 2nd. That puts Banks in a possible, but questionable, spot for the purple to draft him, so we'll see.
If they did, it wouldn't be a bad move, however. He sounds like a nice corner blitzer, likes to mix it up in run support, and despite not being fast, likely wouldn't need to be in our typical Cover-2 system where he needs to cover a zone rather than go man-to-man. In fact, having that type of skill set would be nice in case we can't get Winfield back. And can you remember the last time we've had a ball hawking defensive back player, let along a cornerback? Every time one of our backs gets an interception, my mind melts out my ears because I can barely believe it. "A turnover? For us?! Well, I accept you!" If Banks is as good at disrupting deep balls, jump balls, and picking balls off, he'd ONE: be a great defensive presence for the Vikings and would bring a much needed turnover machine to the team, and TWO: he'd make a great teammate to Manti Te'o (that's a balls joke).
What do you think? Is there another CB you got your eye on?