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Vikings draft prospect microscope: UTEP G Will Hernandez

By Matthew Coller

As we lead up to the NFL Draft here at 1500ESPN, we will take a closer look at the prospects who could end up as Minnesota Vikings. Our first edition is lineman Will Hernandez….

Barring a surprise signing or trade, the Minnesota Vikings will enter NFL Draft season with their eyes on offensive linemen. One of the most impressive of this year’s crop is UTEP’s Will Hernandez. He is massive, quick and nasty. While the quality of competition might be questionable, Hernandez was dominant, drawing comparisons to Ritchie Incognito.

Why the Vikings could draft Will Hernandez:

The Vikings offensive line was built on undersized linemen last year because of their quickness and athleicism. Hernandez may be gigantic but he’s athletic enough to fit into any scheme. His UTEP offense had a power running game last year but Hernandez was quick to point out that they ran zone (which is what the Vikings will use) the previous season when Aaron Jones (Green Bay) was their feature back.

Hernandez is one of the best guards in a very good overall class and he could step right into the Vikings’ O-line in 2018.

Even if the coaching staff would prefer Mike Remmers at guard, it might be better to pick a starting guard rather than a tackle who needs development.

What draft experts are saying:

ESPN’s Todd McShay’s latest mock draft has Hernandez going No. 23 overall to the Los Angeles Rams.

Here is the bottom line from Hernandez’s draft profile:

“Four-year starter at left guard and the most highly-decorated offensive linemen in UTEP history. Hernandez possesses a rare combination of power, balance, and athletic ability. He is a plus run blocker with the anchor and footwork to handle himself in pass protection as well. Though he lacks height and length teams would like, it shouldn’t hurt his stock much. Hernandez should be able to step in as an immediate starter with a high ceiling.”

What the numbers say:

Total pass block snaps: 386

Results: Zero sacks, zero hits, three hurries

Hernandez’s Pro Football Focus grades in each area

Hernandez’s NFL Combine results by percentile via Mockdraftable

Bottom line:

There is no such thing as a can’t-miss prospect but Hernandez leaves us with very few questions about his chances to become a good-to-great pro. He checks off all the boxes from college production to measurables to character. The biggest question is whether his Combine performance bumped him up in the draft and out of reach of the Vikings.

Watch Will Hernandez

The post Vikings draft prospect microscope: UTEP G Will Hernandez appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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