CB Kirkpatrick among Vikings' predraft visits

Dre Kirkpatrick (Andrew Bones/Scout.com)

The Vikings have scheduled a predraft visit with one of the top cornerbacks in the draft, according to what a source told Scout.com. It should come as little surprise, given the Vikings' needs in the secondary.

The Minnesota Vikings are among 10 NFL predraft visits that University of Alabama cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick has scheduled, according to what a league source told Scout.com's Aaron Wilson.

Teams are allowed 30 predraft visits and the Vikings typically schedule the majority of them to visit Winter Park together a couple weeks before the draft to see how they interact with each other.

Kirkpatrick declared for the draft after being named a first-team All-American as a junior. He tied for second on the Crimson Tide with nine passes defensed and tied for the team lead with two forced fumbles. All three of his interceptions came in 2010.

He is expected to be selected anywhere from the middle of the first round to early in the second round.

"Kirkpatrick has tremendous zone awareness. Some people think he can be a free safety," NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock said at the Scouting Combine.

With his 6-foot-2 height, his length and attitude, others believe he is best suited for a press-man scheme.

At the NFL Scouting Combine, the 192-pounder ran the 40-yard dash in 4.51 seconds and registered a 35-inch vertical leap and a 10-foot broad jump.

"Everything I can improve on, but the biggest thing is not being too amped up," Kirkpatrick said of his game. "Trying to make a play instead of letting
it come to me. I'm trying to make a play and let it get away from me."

At the combine, he met with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Miami Dolphins, San Diego Chargers, Chicago Bears and Oakland Raiders, among others.

The Bucs, Jacksonville Jaguars, Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys, Baltimore Ravens, Detroit Lions and Tennessee Titans are among the other predraft visits he has set up.

A possession of marijuana charge in Florida filed against Kirkpatrick after he declared for the draft was subsequently dropped.

"It was me being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The guy that left the marijuana in the car turned himself in and didn't want to put me in a bad situation," Kirkpatrick said. "He signed an affidavit saying that I was unaware of the marijuana being in the car and I was unaware of it."

Kirkpatrick had 26 tackles, nine pass deflections, returned a blocked field goal for a touchdown and forced two fumbles last year. Two seasons ago, he had 53 tackles and three interceptions.

LSU's Morris Claiborne is expected to be the first cornerback selected in the draft, but Kirkpatrick believes he has similar talents.

"I think our games are similar. Only difference is I'm just a little taller. I'm very physical and want that physical play," he said.

The former Parade Magazine All-American chose Alabama over Texas, Florida, LSU, USC, Miami, Florida State, Auburn, Tennessee and Michigan.


Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this topic on our message boards. To become a subscriber to the Viking Update web site or magazine, click here.


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