Vikings poised to pick USC left tackle Matt Kalil

Vikings keep it close, then get blown out

The Minnesota Vikings will listen to trade offers. They’ll consider every option. That’s what any NFL team does during the draft.

But when the Vikings are on the clock for the third overall pick on Thursday night, there will be a clear-cut, 6-foot-7, 306-pound choice staring this rebuilding franchise right in the face.

His name is Matt Kalil, widely considered the best available offensive lineman this year and widely expected to be selected by the Vikings. They need to better protect quarterback Christian Ponder, and what better way to do that then to take an elite left tackle with the potential to block Ponder’s blind side for the next decade?

The Vikings haven’t selected in the top three since 1968, when they drafted offensive tackle Ron Yary first overall.