Tis the season for us fantasy football degenerates. With Week 1 of the preseason in full swing, fans of make-believe football will be neglecting their responsibilities and cramming in as much information over the coming weeks before their big draft(s).
With Minnesota being home to last year’s overall RB3 (Dalvin Cook), WR6 (Justin Jefferson), WR8 (Adam Thielen), and QB11 (Kirk Cousins) in half-point-per-reception scoring, the Vikings have one of the most appealing team stacks in this year’s game. And if you’re a fantasy player who has a weakness for mixing business with Skoldier pleasure, then you’ve come to the right place.
If your football heart wants — maybe NEEDS — to surround its virtual roster with as much purple as possible, this year will be rather difficult — especially in 12-person snake draft formats. Truth be told, with Cook likely going as a top-two pick in drafts this year, you’ll have to land in either of the top spots in order to realistically pull off this feat.
But should you get lucky on draft lottery night and find yourself in the top two, here’s the blueprint to effectively stack your beloved Minnesota Vikings without neglecting the rest of your fantasy football roster.
Disclaimer: I completed this mock draft on Monday, Aug. 9 in ESPN’s public mock draft forum
1st round – Dalvin Cook – 1.02
2nd round – Justin Jefferson – 2.11
3rd round – Adam Thielen – 3.02
The first two picks are fairly self-explanatory, as Cook and Jefferson are elite RB and WR options. However, spending a third-round pick on the Detroit Lakes native, soon-to-be 31-year old is where you officially draw your line in the sand. While it may be a bit early to take him, you know damn well that you’ll have no shot at Thielen returning to you late in the fourth round. If you want him, you’re going to have to pay a premium to get him.
And if you do, you have nothing to apologize for. So what if that purple blood pumping through your veins runs deep? This life chose you and don’t you forget it.
When executing the Minnesota Triple Play out in the fantasy wild, it’s strongly encouraged to open up the backpack you brought with to the draft, take out your Vikings horn, and let it freakin’ rip. If done correctly, local police should be arriving at your draft momentarily due to multiple noise complaints.
Below you’ll see the players you’ll likely be forced to pass on should you complete the three-headed fantasy Vikings out of the gate.
4th round – Mark Andrews – 4.11
Now that we’ve got the must-have Vikings on your roster, finding value will be critical — especially after your hometown reacharoonie in the third round. With tight end being a barren wasteland in the fantasy world, Mark Andrews makes sense here in order to lock up a top-four option. I’m always someone that prioritizes positional scarcity because I’m confident in finding value later on in the draft.
5th round – Cooper Kupp – 5.02
Next up is Rams receiver Cooper Kupp. With former NFC North quarterback Matthew Stafford playing in Tinseltown, both Kupp and Robert Woods should see a noticeable uptick in statistical production. Don’t be surprised if Kupp replicates his 2019 season — where he recorded 94 receptions, 1,165 scrimmage yards, and 10 touchdowns. And as your WR3, you’ll take that seven days a week and two times on Sunday.
6th round – Aaron Rodgers – 6.11
This may be impossible for the loud and proud Vikings truther fantasy player, but anytime you can lock up an elite option — even at a deep position like quarterback — you have to pounce. With Rodgers still full of plenty of piss and vinegar from his standoff with the Packers front office, the 2020 NFL MVP should continue to be a statistical leader at quarterback this season. Plus, if/when Rodgers torches the Vikings as he did in Week 1 last year, having him on your fantasy roster should help cushion the blow.
7th round – Kareem Hunt – 7.02
8th round – Raheem Mostert – 8.11
9th round – Trey Sermon – 9.02
These next three picks are where you can make out like a fantasy bandit with middle-round value. While Hunt, Mostert, and Sermon all find themselves in committee backfields, both the Browns and 49ers are extremely fantasy-friendly, full of boom capabilities on a weekly basis.
10th round – Darnell Mooney – 10.11
11th round – Irv Smith Jr. – 11.02
Now’s the time for the former second-round draft pick. The former Roll Tide tight end steps right into the primary pass-catching role at tight end that was vacated by Kyle Rudolph. And who are we trying to fool, you can never have too many Vikings on your fantasy roster.
12th round – Russell Gage – 12.11
13th round – Rashod Bateman – 13.02
Unfortunately, the former RowTheBoatSkiUMahGoGophers *PJ Fleck voice* receiver suffered a groin injury earlier this week. He’s expected to miss the first handful of weeks of the upcoming season. And even more unfortunate, I drafted Bateman for this roster prior to his injury taking place.
14th round – Kirk Cousins – 14.11
What’s neat about drafting Cousins this year is that if you happen to find yourself at a local Frattalone’s Hardware Store, simply tell the manager that Kirk Cousins sent you and you’re more than likely to get a 25% discount on your plexiglass order.
15th round – Vikings DST – 15.02
Danielle Hunter‘s return should singlehandedly bring this Vikings defense to relevance — both in real life and fantasy.
16th round – Josh Lambo – 16.11
There you have it. Whoever said that you can’t mix business with pleasure clearly never hired me as their fantasy football consultant.
And please don’t forget to send me a thank you card when you hoist your pretend Lombardi trophy after taking your friends, family, and/or co-workers behind the woodshed in fantasy this season.