The Vikings finished the NFL draft on Saturday with an eye on special teams, where at least half of the six players selected in the later rounds can help turn things around.
Last season was dismal for Minnesota’s special teams, from misfiring field goals to poor kick coverage and return phases. Coordinator Marwan Maalouf was let go and replaced by Ryan Ficken, who already knows a few of the Vikings’ late-round picks after interviewing them during the draft process.
“We did struggle on special teams last year,” General Manager Rick Spielman said, “but when you have the type of athletes we were able to get in the third day of the draft this year, nine times out of 10 those guys end up playing and performing well on special teams.”
The Vikings added two proven kick returners in fourth-round running back Kene Nwangwu (Iowa State) and fifth-round receiver Ihmir