MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The Minnesota Vikings selected Boise State offensive tackle Ezra Cleveland with their second-round pick in the draft Friday night, patiently filling another major need without having to move up.
The 6-foot-6, 311-pound Cleveland posted some standout numbers at the scouting combine after three years as the starting left tackle for the Broncos. His athleticism is one of his primary attributes, boasting the mobility to make zone blocks that are key to offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak's system. Cleveland's arrival could mean moving left tackle Riley Reiff to left guard.
Six offensive tackles were taken in the first round, but Louisiana's Robert Hunt (39th overall) was the only offensive lineman off the board in the second round when the Vikings came on the clock. Hunt can play tackle but is likely on track with Miami as a guard.
The Vikings also took two third-round picks, 89th and 105th overall, into the second day of the draft. The latter selection was a compensatory pick for past losses in free agency.
The Vikings used their two first-round picks on Thursday to fill voids at wide receiver (LSU's Justin Jefferson) and cornerback (TCU's Jeff Gladney), taking advantage of depth in this class at both positions. Jefferson went 22nd overall, the fifth wide receiver taken. Gladney was the 31st pick, after the Vikings moved down six spots in a swap with San Francisco that landed them extra selections in the fourth and fifth round.
The offensive line has been a clear area of need for the last five years, and the attempts to address that by general manager Rick Spielman have been rather spotty.
Center Garrett Bradbury went in the first round in 2019 and right tackle Brian O'Neill was a second-rounder in 2018, but they're among just six offensive linemen the Vikings have taken in the first four rounds over the last five drafts.
Left guard Pat Elflein, who was the center his first two years until Bradbury came along, was a third-rounder in 2017 who has struggled after ankle and shoulder surgeries following his rookie season. Reiff, who got a five-year, $58 million contract in 2017, is the only significant free agent signing still on the roster.