Matt Kalil, OT

School: Southern California  |  Conference: PAC12
College Experience: Junior  |  Hometown: Corona, CA
Height/Weight: 6-7 / 306 lbs.
Projected Ranking
OverallPositionProj. Rnd.
311
Selected 1st Rnd
Minnesota Vikings
4th Pick Overall
Latest News
04/30/2012 - Basically, Rick Spielman couldn't have had a better start to his first draft as Vikings general manager. Moments before the draft, he got three picks for nothing when he moved down one spot, allowing the Browns to take running back Trent Richardson, a player the Vikings didn't want or need. Spielman then selected Southern California left tackle Matt Kalil, the player he coveted all along at a position of gigantic need. Then, with a league-high 13 picks, Spielman turned around and upgraded another massive need by trading back into the first round to take the second-best safety, Notre Dame's Harrison Smith, with the 29th overall pick. Within a span of 25 picks, the Vikings had significantly strengthened their two weakest areas - offensive line and secondary - with two first-round picks. In the third round, the Vikings then grabbed some quality cornerback depth and the heir apparent to Antoine Winfield when they selected Central Florida's Josh Robinson, who ran a Combine-best 4.29 40-yard dash. They addressed their need at receiver by taking Arkansas teammates Jarius Wright and Greg Childs in the fourth round. More secondary help came in the fifth round when Spielman took Notre Dame's 6-1, 208-pound hybrid corner/safety. A somewhat puzzling pick came in the sixth round when Spielman took Georgia kicker Blair Walsh. There was no indication that veteran Ryan Longwell was in trouble, but he does turn 38 soon and is coming off a season in which he missed six field-goal attempts (22 of 28). BEST PICK: Left tackle Matt Kalil: He was the best and safest pick at a position of great need and importance to second-year quarterback Christian Ponder's development. Nothing else the team does matters if Ponder isn't well protected. - The Sports Xchange

04/30/2012 - A closer look at the Vikings' picks: Round 1/4 - Matt Kalil, LT, 6-6, 308, Southern California...Kalil has the prototypical left tackle build, a passion for the game and the quickest feet that Vikings scouts have seen in years. - The Sports Xchange

04/30/2012 - The Vikings feel left tackle Matt Kalil, the fourth overall pick, will be primed and ready to go by opening day. Why? Because he'll face Jared Allen every day in practice during training camp. Allen's 22 sacks a year ago came within half a sack of the NFL record set by former Giants defensive end Michael Strahan. "I'm excited to go against the best defensive end in the NFL day in and day out in Jared Allen," Kalil said. "I think he is definitely going to make me a better player and to go against a lot of other good defensive ends in the NFL. I think it's more excitement for the challenge to really test my skills." Kalil might be in line for a nice endorsement deal from Ford. His college coach, Lane Kiffin, said on Thursday night that Kalil has already purchased his dream automobile - a Ford F-150. "I'm low key," Kalil said. "Even though I'm from L.A. and Hollywood, that doesn't represent my personality at all. I kind of like to hang out with my friends, play a lot of football, that's what I love to do. My dream car is a Ford truck, a brand new Ford F-150. That's the kind of guy I am and I also love to be a good teammate and a good family man." - The Sports Xchange

04/30/2012 - In the span of 25 picks, Spielman had significantly strengthened the two weakest areas of the team - offensive line and the secondary. With Kalil on board, Charlie Johnson slides from left tackle to left guard, where he's far better suited to play. As for safety, the Vikings had only three on the roster before Smith was selected. And one of them, Eric Frampton, is strictly a special teamer. Asked if this is how he envisioned the first round unfolding, Spielman said, "You can say that was a fair vision." Spielman has run the Vikings' draft the past six years. But this was his first with final say. Former coach Brad Childress had final say, while Spielman and Frazier shared authority during last year's draft. "It was just a lot smoother," Spielman said of having a clear-cut decision-making voice in the team's war room. Spielman will ultimately be judged on this draft and whether Christian Ponder, last year's No. 11 pick overall, develops into a franchise quarterback. Signing former Bengals receiver Jerome Simpson two days before the draft gave Ponder another playmaker. And Kalil should provide Ponder with the time and comfort level needed to make plays in the pocket. "We saw (Kalil) as a guy who could be a Pro Bowler for a long time," Frazier said. "That was obvious from our standpoint. Along with what we're trying to do with our quarterback. We wanted to make sure we do the things that are necessary to ensure that he has success. This gives us a chance to take that step in that direction." - The Sports Xchange

04/30/2012 - The first round of Rick Spielman's first draft as Vikings general manager went exactly as he had hoped and planned through months of expert subterfuge designed to disguise the team's intentions while drumming up trade interest in the third overall pick. When Spielman convinced the Browns that teams were coming to him with an interest in Alabama running back Trent Richardson, Cleveland agreed before the start of the draft to send the Vikings three picks to move down one spot. Because the Vikings had no interest in Richardson, Spielman gave up nothing to get extra picks in the fourth, fifth and seventh rounds. At that point, he had a league-high 13 picks and was moments from selecting Southern Cal left tackle Matt Kalil, an immediate starter and a player the Vikings feel is a safe bet to become a multiple Pro Bowler at a key franchise-building postion. "I was like, 'Wow!'" coach Leslie Frazier said when asked for his reaction to the trade. "That's pretty good. I think Rick did a great job of setting the table leading up to the draft, just making people aware that we were willing to move and that we had three different guys (Kalil, LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne and Oklahoma State Justin Blackmon) we were talking about and discussing. So it worked out like a charm for us." Spielman wasn't done. With extra picks in his pocket, he began targeting Notre Dame safety Harrison Smith when the draft reached the 20th pick. Finally, he was able to get Baltimore to give up the 29th pick for the Vikings' second-round pick (35th overall) and the highest of their four fourth-rounders (95th overall). - The Sports Xchange

04/27/2012 - The first round of Rick Spielman's first draft as Vikings general manager went exactly as he had hoped and planned through months of expert subterfuge designed to disguise the team's intentions while drumming up trade interest in the third overall pick. When Spielman convinced the Browns that teams were coming to him with an interest in Alabama running back Trent Richardson, Cleveland agreed before the start of the draft to send the Vikings three picks to move down one spot. Because the Vikings had no interest in Richardson, Spielman gave up nothing to get extra picks in the fourth, fifth and seventh rounds. At that point, he had a league-high 13 picks and was moments from selecting Southern Cal left tackle Matt Kalil, an immediate starter and a player the Vikings feel is a safe bet to become a multiple Pro Bowler at a key franchise-building postion. "I was like, 'Wow!'" coach Leslie Frazier said when asked for his reaction to the trade. "That's pretty good. I think Rick did a great job of setting the table leading up to the draft, just making people aware that we were willing to move and that we had three different guys (Kalil, LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne and Oklahoma State Justin Blackmon) we were talking about and discussing. So it worked out like a charm for us." Spielman wasn't done. With extra picks in his pocket, he began targeting Notre Dame safety Harrison Smith when the draft reached the 20th pick. Finally, he was able to get Baltimore to give up the 29th pick for the Vikings' second-round pick (35th overall) and the highest of their four fourth-rounders (95th overall). - The Sports Xchange

04/27/2012 - In the span of 25 picks, Spielman had significantly strengthened the two weakest areas of the team - offensive line and the secondary. With Kalil on board, Charlie Johnson slides from left tackle to left guard, where he's far better suited to play. As for safety, the Vikings had only three on the roster before Smith was selected. And one of them, Eric Frampton, is strictly a special teamer. Asked if this is how he envisioned the first round unfolding, Spielman said, "You can say that was a fair vision." Spielman has run the Vikings' draft the past six years. But this was his first with final say. Former coach Brad Childress had final say, while Spielman and Frazier shared authority during last year's draft. "It was just a lot smoother," Spielman said of having a clear-cut decision-making voice in the team's war room. Spielman will ultimately be judged on this draft and whether Christian Ponder, last year's No. 11 pick overall, develops into a franchise quarterback. Signing former Bengals receiver Jerome Simpson two days before the draft gave Ponder another playmaker. And Kalil should provide Ponder with the time and comfort level needed to make plays in the pocket. "We saw (Kalil) as a guy who could be a Pro Bowler for a long time," Frazier said. "That was obvious from our standpoint. Along with what we're trying to do with our quarterback. We wanted to make sure we do the things that are necessary to ensure that he has success. This gives us a chance to take that step in that direction." - The Sports Xchange

04/27/2012 - 2012 NFL DRAFT: PICK-BY-PICK ANALYSIS: 4. Minnesota Vikings (draft-day trade with Cleveland): OT Matt Kalil, Southern Cal -- Minnesota surrendered 50 sacks last season, meaning improved protection for 2011 first-round pick Christian Ponder was essential. Ponder has had three straight injury-shortened seasons including his rookie year. - Jeff Reynolds, The Sports Xchange

04/26/2012 - ROB RANG'S TOP 50 PLAYERS OF THE 2012 NFL DRAFT: 3. Matt Kalil, OT, Southern Cal*: Any doubts as to which of the top three junior offensive tackles would rise above the rest ended with an impressive all-around Combine effort from Kalil. He isn't an elite OT prospect in the mold of Joe Thomas or Jake Long but isn't far off. - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

04/23/2012 - For several months, nearly every draft expert predicted Southern Cal offensive tackle Matt Kalil was headed to Minnesota with the third pick. But there has been increasing chatter in recent days that the Vikings could pass on Kalil in favor of LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne or Oklahoma State wideout Justin Blackmon, and Kalil could slide several spots. The scenario raises an interesting question: If Kalil were to slip to No. 9, would the Carolina Panthers take him? Put another way, would two Kalils be better than one? Panthers center Ryan Kalil, a second-round pick in 2007, has been to three consecutive Pro Bowls and last year signed a 6-year, $49 million contract extension that made him the NFL's highest-paid center. Obviously, the Panthers like Kalil. And some in the organization think his little brother can be even better. "(Matt) is better than his brother," Panthers director of college scouting Don Gregory told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "He's bigger, faster, stronger than his brother. He's so athletic. He will be a 10-year pro and protect your (expletive) out at left tackle." - Joseph Person, The Charlotte Observer

04/23/2012 - Normally a team like the Vikings will sign 10 or so rookie free agents, but that might not be the case this year, according to Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman. "The budget now with the new [collective bargaining agreement] is basically you can spend $75,000 in signing bonuses on all your college free agents," he said. "There's never been a cap in the past. Now going forward you get $75,000 towards signing college free agents. How you divvy it up is what you do with it." That new rule makes the draft even more important because in the past, the Vikings and many other teams have signed free agents who have made it big with the club. Spielman believes there potentially could be four or five tackles going in the first round. "Everybody talks about Riley Reiff from Iowa, you talk about Jonathan Martin at Stanford, talk about Mike Adams at Ohio State, you're talking about another big guy at Georgia that was down at the Senior Bowl, Cordy Glenn, he can play both tackle and guard. There are a lot of potential options out there," Spielman said. - Sid Hartman, The Star Tribune

04/19/2012 - We've thought for some time now that the first three draft picks would be easy to predict. Andrew Luck will go No. 1 to the Colts, Robert Griffin III will go No. 2 to the Redskins and USC left tackle Matt Kalil will go No. 3 to the Vikings. Now, a little more than a week before the draft, the rumors continue to spin all over the place regarding who Minnesota will select. So, when the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that the Browns on Wednesday will conduct a private workout with Kalil at USC, it raises the possibility that he could fall to Cleveland's pick at No. 4. This isn't a one-time interest either, as the Browns played host to Kalil in Cleveland for a private workout as well. Aside from Kalil, Cleveland also reportedly has had interest in Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill, Alabama running back Trent Richardson, LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne and Oklahoma State receiver Justin Blackmon. Or the Browns could trade down. But with Joe Thomas already entrenched as the left tackle in Cleveland, it doesn't make a ton of sense that the Browns would draft Kalil at No. 4 so he could play right tackle. - Josh Katzowitz, CBS Sports

04/16/2012 - Tradition runs deep with Matt Kalil, whose brother is a three-time Pro Bowl center and whose father was drafted in the NFL and played in the USFL, and who is a little more than a week shy of becoming the latest Southern Cal offensive linemen selected in the first round of the draft. But bloodlines, USC offensive line coach James Cregg acknowledged, will only carry a player so far without the blood and sweat and tears that typically accompany the manner of sacrifice that merits greatness. And Matt Kalil has, during his tenure at USC, invested plenty of all them on his way to sure-fire status as a top five NFL pick. "Some of it probably comes naturally," allowed Cregg, whose resume includes two seasons with the Oakland Raiders, and who has a solid background in what it takes to play in the league. "But most of it for an offensive lineman, no matter the level, is hard work. And (Kalil) has worked for what he's gotten and what he will be." In the 45 lotteries conducted since the common draft was implemented in 1967, there has amazingly been 55 former Trojans blockers selected. Twenty-two of them were tabbed in the first round and seven were top 10 choices. The consensus top lineman on the draft boards of every franchise to which The Sports Xchange has spoken, Kalil will bump up all those numbers. And be proud to do so. "You're always aware of the (legacy)," Kalil said. "Some people think of Southern Cal, and they think of all the great (skill-position) players who have been at the school, and played in the NFL. But if you're a lineman at USC, you know what's expected of you, definitely. You want to live up to that." - Len Pasquarelli, The Sports Xchange

04/06/2012 - The Vikings had their "Top 30" draft invitees in for dinner and an overnight visit Tuesday (April 3). Included on the list were three possibilities with the No. 3 overall pick: USC left tackle Matt Kalil, LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne and Oklahoma State receiver Justin Blackmon. It did not include quarterbacks Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III, both of whom are expected to be gone by the third pick. Team officials will take Easter weekend off and then meet back on Tuesday to begin a nine-day stretch of draft meetings in which all of the coaches, front-office personnel and scouting department will be in basic lockdown mode for 12 to 14 hours a day. As the team heads toward those meetings, it continues to field some calls about possibly trading the No. 3 pick. "There have been some feelers," general manager Rick Spielman said. "But I think if there is any type of trade, I think most of the talk with get serious the closer we get to the draft just because people, like we are, are getting ready to go into their final draft meetings. "So I think once everybody gets their game plan and the players they identify as the ones they really want to hone in on, that's when teams start to want to make trades up or down. But I don't anticipate anything happening with us until we're on the clock, if we do anything." - The Sports Xchange

04/02/2012 - NFL DRAFT SCOUT TOP OFFENSIVE LINEMEN: *Matt Kalil, Southern California, 6-7, 306...Matt's brother, Ryan, last year received the biggest contract ever paid to an NFL center, worth $49 million over six years from the Carolina Panthers. Now Matt can turn this into a friendly sibling rivalry by seeing what he can make as a tackle, a position that pays more than center. He won't wait long to be drafted, but he may need to prove himself and wait for that second contract to top his brother. Genetics and hard work molded Kalil into perhaps the best offensive tackle in college football, and with normal improvement he can be one of the best in the NFL. He plays with a nasty edge and obviously paid attention to his elders while growing up. His father, Frank, was drafted by the Buffalo Bills and played with the USFL's Arizona Wranglers. Brother Ryan was an anchor at center for USC (2003-2006) before being draft in the second round in 2007. Scouts temper their enthusiasm on Matt Kalil a bit because he has had the luxury of being surrounded by excellent talent, but he still managed to stand out and looks like a prized left tackle candidate. His bloodlines may even have influenced his selection as 2011 preseason All-American by Playboy. After all, his mother, formerly Cheryl Van Cleave, was Miss California in 1981. - Frank Cooney, The Sports Xchange

03/08/2012 - USC's biggest stars did not do a lot of work at Pro Day on Wednesday but there was no lack of drama. Offensive tackle Matt Kalil and defensive end Nick Perry, ranked in NFLDraftScout.com's top 32 with Kalil in the top five of Rob Rang's Big Board, did some position drills but did not replicate any of their NFL combine work because they were pleased with their initial results. "These drills come easy to me," said Kalil, who is projected to be the third pick in the NFL draft. "It's cool to look at (mock drafts). But anything can happen on draft day." Kalil (6-foot-6 5/8, 308 pounds) said he would take USC coach Lane Kiffin to New York as a guest for the NFL draft in April, when he'll be one of the dozen or so prospects in attendance at the Thursday primetime event. "Coach Kiffin did a lot for me," he said. "He will be in the green room with me." - NFLDraftScout.com

02/23/2012 - On how bloodlines can be a positive for a player like Matt Kalil and whether they are part of a team's scouting assessment (i.e. intangibles): "I would say bloodlines are important. You go the case of the Matthews family. Obviously, great bloodlines there. I think your chances are good that if a guy comes from a family of great players he might be a great player. That does not guarantee anything, though." On whether that's because of genetics or being around people who are familiar with a football environment in their upbringing: "My guess is it's both. Genetics are obviously a huge part of lineage. But having grown up and been around the game and seeing what those before them did to be great players, it probably would help." - Pittsburgh Steelers General Manager Kevin Colbert, 2012 NFL Combine Transcript

02/23/2012 - Kalil: "His brother turned out to be an extremely good player. A Pro Bowl player. Kalil is very talented at left tackle. He has all the feet and skillset that you're looking for. He has the arm length. He has the nasty demeanor. The finish, when you watch him on tape, to finish run blocks. I feel he's going to be a very good left tackle in this league as he grows in the position and moves forward." - Rick Spielman, 2012 NFL Combine Transcript

02/23/2012 - NFL DRAFT SCOUT PRE-COMBINE TOP 64: 3. *Matt Kalil, OT, Southern California, 6-6, 295, 1...Genetics and hard work molded Kalil into a one of the best offensive tackles in college football. He has room for improvement, and needs some additional bulk, but Kalil has the potential to be one of the best in the NFL. He plays with a nasty edge and shows that he must have paid attention to his elders while growing up. His father, Frank, was drafted by the Buffalo Bills and played with the USFL's Arizona Wranglers. His brother, Ryan, was an anchor at center for USC (2003-2006), was drafted in the second round by the Carolina Panthers (2007) and last year became the highest-paid center in NFL history when he signed a six-year, $49 million contract. Scouts temper their enthusiasm on Matt Kalil a bit because he has had the luxury of being surrounded by excellent talent. But he seems prepared to handle the difficult position of left tackle. His bloodlines may even have influenced his selection as preseason All-American by Playboy magazine. After all, his mother, formerly Cheryl Van Cleave, was Miss California in 1981. - Frank Cooney - The Sports Xchange, NFL Draft Scout

12/19/2011 - 2011 PAC-12 FOOTBALL MORRIS TROPHY WINNER: Offensive tackle Matt Kalil of USC and defensive tackle Star Lotulelei of UTAH have been named winners of the 32nd annual Morris Trophy. The Morris Trophy is a unique award given to the outstanding offensive and defensive linemen in the Pac-12 Conference. What makes the award unique is the selection procedure, which has the starting offensive linemen in the Conference voting for the defensive winner and vice versa. It is truly a players' award. Kalil, a 6-foot-7, 295-pound junior from Corona, Calif., was named a first-team All-Pac-12 performer in voting by the Pac-12 head coaches, and was a member of the Walter Camp Foundation All-America team. He is a two-year starter for USC and started 12 games this season at left tackle. Behind the offensive line, the Trojans averaged 456.8 yards of total offense, while allowing only eight quarterback sacks (0.67 per game) all year - a figure that was ranked tops in the nation. Kalil strived on special teams as well, where he blocked four kicks (2 blocked PAT, 2 blocked FG attempts) this year. USC linemen have earned the offensive side of the Morris Trophy 12 times in 32 years. - Pac-12 football

12/19/2011 - As it turns out, Matt Kalil is heading off to the NFL early, after all. Beginning with a tweet from ESPN's Chris Mortensen and later confirmed by direct quotes from Kalil to the Los Angeles Times, Kalil erased any doubt about his future intentions. The AP All-American told Gary Klein of the Times that "It was definitely a tough decision because I love SC. But, it's a special opportunity. It's time to move on." It had been widely presumed that Kalil -- rated by NFLDraftScout.com as a potential top ten pick since September -- would strongly consider making the leap. He'd proven himself in two starting seasons as the Trojans' left tackle, keeping the Dallas Cowboys' 2010 first round pick Tyron Smith on the right side and earning comparisons to the great Tony Boselli along the way. As such, when I heard rumbling a week ago that Kalil was "set to return" to USC I was as surprised as anyone. Upon hearing news of Kalil's confirmed intent to file early for the draft, I contacted my source again. "I am surprised he is coming out," the source said, "especially with so much time before [the January 15] deadline. The impression I had was that [Kalil's] decision was going to take into account strongly whatever the quarterback decided to do. It almost seemed like the quarterback was looking for an excuse to come back. He loves it there. So, there was talk that he might come back and in doing so convince Kalil to do the same. The fact that [USC] would be past the bowl ban next year was a pretty big motivator for some of the guys." - Rob Rang, NFLDraftScout.com

12/16/2011 - Southern California left tackle Matt Kalil says he will skip his senior season to enter the NFL draft. Kalil will leave the bowl-banned and fifth-ranked Trojans after allowing no sacks and emerging as a standout run blocker in his junior season, according to USC's official website and the Los Angeles Times. Kalil was named to the AP's All-America first team earlier this week. The younger brother of Carolina Panthers center Ryan Kalil is a two-year starter at left tackle for the Trojans. The 6-foot-7 Kalil also excelled on special teams, blocking several kicks. Kalil is widely projected as a top-5 pick in the 2012 draft. USC quarterback Matt Barkley still hasn't announced whether he will bypass his senior season, but Kalil had said he was likely to follow Barkley's lead on the decision. - AP Sports

12/16/2011 - USC offensive lineman Matt Kalil, a fourth-year junior, will leave school to enter this spring's NFL Draft, ESPN.com reported. Kalil is expected to be the first offensive lineman taken in the draft, according to many projections, so his decision comes as no surprise. Wide receiver Justin Blackmon and quarterback Andrew Luck are among the other players with college eligibility remaining who have declared for the NFL Draft. Kalil, a first-team All-American this season, is the younger brother of Carolina Panthers center Ryan Kalil. - The Sports Xchange

12/08/2011 - College football players have until mid-January to declare for the NFL draft, but that didn't stop USC tackle Matt Kalil from waking up to what he called "mayhem" Thursday morning. A website reported that Kalil, who is weighing whether to turn pro or return for a final season with the Trojans, was "set to return," citing a source close to the situation. "I woke up to mayhem," Kalil said. "I guess it was kind of a glimpse of what's going to be happening. "I'm not close to making a decision. That will probably happen in the next couple weeks. No decision has been made. I just started thinking about the process I'm going to go through to make the decision. "But I think I got a thousand new followers this morning on my Twitter account." Like most draft-eligible players, Kalil said he had filed paperwork with the NFL seeking an evaluation of his projected draft position. - Gary Klein, The Los Angeles Times

09/11/2011 - If Southern California's victory in the first game in Pac-12 history is any indication of what's in store, the rest of the country had better not fall asleep before the West Coast games are finished. It might be a good idea to stay up for a few hours after that, too. Matt Kalil blocked Utah's 41-yard field goal attempt on the final play and Torin Harris returned it for a touchdown that wasn't counted until two hours after the game ended in USC's 23-14 win Saturday night in this expanded league's wacky debut. Matt Barkley passed for 264 yards for the Trojans (2-0, 1-0), but the Utes drove into field-goal range from their 33 in the final 1:01, helped by two favorable rulings that put them in position for a tying field goal. That's when Kalil easily swatted down Coleman Petersen's final kick, and Harris returned it all the way into the Utah end zone. "It hit my forearm, so it didn't even get over my hand," said Kalil, the Trojans' 6-foot-7 left tackle. "Luckily, I'm a tall guy." - AP Sports

07/13/2011 - 2011 ROTARY LOMBARDI AWARD PRESEASON WATCH LIST: Matt Kalil, OT, USC, (13 career starts at left tackle for USC), has been selected to the Rotary Lombardi Award Preseason watch list for the 2011 college football season. Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to down linemen, end-to-end, either on offense of defense, who set up no farther than 10 yards to the left or right of the ball, and linebackers who set up no father than five yards deep from the line of scrimmage. This is the 42nd year that the Rotary Lombardi Award has named the nation's college lineman of the year. - The Rotary Lombardi Award Committee

07/11/2011 - 2011 OUTLAND TROPHY PRESEASON WATCH LIST: Matt Kalil, USC, OT, has been selected one of 65 players named to Preseason Outland Trophy Watch List for the 2011 college football season. The Outland Trophy goes to the best interior lineman in college football, presented annually since 1946 and is the third oldest award in major college football. - Football Writers Association of America

 
 
Latest News
04/30/2012 - Basically, Rick Spielman couldn't have had a better start to his first draft as Vikings general manager. Moments before the draft, he got three picks for nothing when he moved down one spot, allowing the Browns to take running back Trent Richardson, a player the Vikings didn't want or need. Spielman then selected Southern California left tackle Matt Kalil, the player he coveted all along at a position of gigantic need. Then, with a league-high 13 picks, Spielman turned around and upgraded another massive need by trading back into the first round to take the second-best safety, Notre Dame's Harrison Smith, with the 29th overall pick. Within a span of 25 picks, the Vikings had significantly strengthened their two weakest areas - offensive line and secondary - with two first-round picks. In the third round, the Vikings then grabbed some quality cornerback depth and the heir apparent to Antoine Winfield when they selected Central Florida's Josh Robinson, who ran a Combine-best 4.29 40-yard dash. They addressed their need at receiver by taking Arkansas teammates Jarius Wright and Greg Childs in the fourth round. More secondary help came in the fifth round when Spielman took Notre Dame's 6-1, 208-pound hybrid corner/safety. A somewhat puzzling pick came in the sixth round when Spielman took Georgia kicker Blair Walsh. There was no indication that veteran Ryan Longwell was in trouble, but he does turn 38 soon and is coming off a season in which he missed six field-goal attempts (22 of 28). BEST PICK: Left tackle Matt Kalil: He was the best and safest pick at a position of great need and importance to second-year quarterback Christian Ponder's development. Nothing else the team does matters if Ponder isn't well protected. - The Sports Xchange

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