do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

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Where do the Vikings see Ezra? At G or T?

A. Guard
6
67%
B. Right Tackle
0
No votes
C. Left Tackle
3
33%
 
Total votes: 9

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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by StumpHunter » Sun Mar 14, 2021 8:25 pm

Can someone point me to quotes where Spielman has talked about Cleveland being our LT of the future?

Even now with no LT on the roster, he doesn't say they have a good option in Cleveland, he talks about possibly bringing back Reiff.

Shouldn't he be selling Cleveland as the next LT at this point if that is how he viewed him?
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by VikingPaul73 » Fri Mar 26, 2021 9:59 am

StumpHunter wrote:
Sun Mar 14, 2021 8:25 pm
Can someone point me to quotes where Spielman has talked about Cleveland being our LT of the future?

Even now with no LT on the roster, he doesn't say they have a good option in Cleveland, he talks about possibly bringing back Reiff.

Shouldn't he be selling Cleveland as the next LT at this point if that is how he viewed him?
Agreed....you would think by now, after releasing Reiff, if they planned to moved Ezra to LT, they would have said it by now.

Maybe I am being naive and assuming too much transparency.....but I have to think given the lack of any statements on the topic, the Vikings are planning to keep the status quo, ie Ezra at RG.

Or maybe they're waiting to see who falls to them at 14?? If it's an OT they like, well then Ezra is a RG. If a G they love is at 14, Ezra to LT? I would hope they would be more proactive in implementing their "plan" than this, but who knows?
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by Pondering Her Percy » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:00 am

StumpHunter wrote:
Sun Mar 14, 2021 8:25 pm
Can someone point me to quotes where Spielman has talked about Cleveland being our LT of the future?

Even now with no LT on the roster, he doesn't say they have a good option in Cleveland, he talks about possibly bringing back Reiff.

Shouldn't he be selling Cleveland as the next LT at this point if that is how he viewed him?
I dont think anything has been said right now because they are keeping their options open. The tackle FA market is still fairly solid. The tackle to guard ratio in the draft is a mixed bag. They arent going to say Ezra is their next left tackle if they plan on pursuing Eric Fisher. They also arent saying Cleveland is staying at guard because if they decide to not go after any tackles at all and draft someone like Trey Smith, Cleveland could end up at tackle. They are basically using Cleveland as a chess piece right now. I dont think it's right, but that's what they are doing.

Regardless, I literally do not understand how they can evaluate Cleveland coming out and say to themselves, "yeah he's not ready to play left tackle in the NFL".....a position he's played his entire life. But they can say "yeah he'll be ready to play RIGHT guard by mid season".....a position he's never played in his life and is on the complete opposite side of the line. Ezra Cleveland was Brian O'Neill 2.0 coming out of college. Hell, look at the original post in this thread, analysts were even saying his pro comparison is Brian O'Neill.

So I've said it a few times and I'll say it again....would you ever consider moving O'Neill to LG? Absolutely not. I'm not even sure if I would out of complete desperation. But that is exactly what we are doing with Cleveland. Putting him at a position he was never comfortable at to begin with out of desperation. Dru Samia was so bad last year that he just simply couldnt go in at RG any longer. It was claimed to be a wrist injury but I dont buy it. For as hard nosed as Zim comes off, he cant flat out tell a guy he's benched because he doesnt want to hurt any feelings (yeah, think about it, since the day he was hired, how often has he ever benched a guy and there have been plenty that deserved benching).

But anyways, yes it's 100% out of desperation. If Cleveland moves and all you have is Cole who is somewhat of a question mark, they have zero starting guards. In their current situation and what's left on the market and not many early round guards in the draft, they dont want zero starting guards right now. They are going to do what they always do with that position, put a damn bandaid over it. Fill it with a former tackle or a former center or a cheap low risk "possible solid reward" signing. I thought they ignored 3 tech DT for a long time but man, this is just getting ridiculous at this point. How does every Vikings fan on planet earth recognize we need better guards and we keep putting a bandaid over it. That's just plain ignorant. And I dont think that starts with Spielman, I dont think it's our offensive scheme. This is Zimmer's stubborn as# still coaching like he has Earl Campbell in the backfield and wants the most elite running game in the NFL and not giving a damn if he protects his QB or not.

I just dont get how you can say or think that Cleveland is not a tackle when you've literally never tried him there is beyond me. It makes absolutely no sense.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by StumpHunter » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:29 am

Pondering Her Percy wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:00 am
StumpHunter wrote:
Sun Mar 14, 2021 8:25 pm
Can someone point me to quotes where Spielman has talked about Cleveland being our LT of the future?

Even now with no LT on the roster, he doesn't say they have a good option in Cleveland, he talks about possibly bringing back Reiff.

Shouldn't he be selling Cleveland as the next LT at this point if that is how he viewed him?
I dont think anything has been said right now because they are keeping their options open. The tackle FA market is still fairly solid. The tackle to guard ratio in the draft is a mixed bag. They arent going to say Ezra is their next left tackle if they plan on pursuing Eric Fisher. They also arent saying Cleveland is staying at guard because if they decide to not go after any tackles at all and draft someone like Trey Smith, Cleveland could end up at tackle. They are basically using Cleveland as a chess piece right now. I dont think it's right, but that's what they are doing.

Regardless, I literally do not understand how they can evaluate Cleveland coming out and say to themselves, "yeah he's not ready to play left tackle in the NFL".....a position he's played his entire life. But they can say "yeah he'll be ready to play RIGHT guard by mid season".....a position he's never played in his life and is on the complete opposite side of the line. Ezra Cleveland was Brian O'Neill 2.0 coming out of college. Hell, look at the original post in this thread, analysts were even saying his pro comparison is Brian O'Neill.

So I've said it a few times and I'll say it again....would you ever consider moving O'Neill to LG? Absolutely not. I'm not even sure if I would out of complete desperation. But that is exactly what we are doing with Cleveland. Putting him at a position he was never comfortable at to begin with out of desperation. Dru Samia was so bad last year that he just simply couldnt go in at RG any longer. It was claimed to be a wrist injury but I dont buy it. For as hard nosed as Zim comes off, he cant flat out tell a guy he's benched because he doesnt want to hurt any feelings (yeah, think about it, since the day he was hired, how often has he ever benched a guy and there have been plenty that deserved benching).

But anyways, yes it's 100% out of desperation. If Cleveland moves and all you have is Cole who is somewhat of a question mark, they have zero starting guards. In their current situation and what's left on the market and not many early round guards in the draft, they dont want zero starting guards right now. They are going to do what they always do with that position, put a damn bandaid over it. Fill it with a former tackle or a former center or a cheap low risk "possible solid reward" signing. I thought they ignored 3 tech DT for a long time but man, this is just getting ridiculous at this point. How does every Vikings fan on planet earth recognize we need better guards and we keep putting a bandaid over it. That's just plain ignorant. And I dont think that starts with Spielman, I dont think it's our offensive scheme. This is Zimmer's stubborn as# still coaching like he has Earl Campbell in the backfield and wants the most elite running game in the NFL and not giving a damn if he protects his QB or not.

I just dont get how you can say or think that Cleveland is not a tackle when you've literally never tried him there is beyond me. It makes absolutely no sense.
I don't believe Zimmer identifies guys who are guard versus tackles in the draft.

Kubiak probably had the most to say in that decision, and probably told Spielman he liked Cleveland in the draft, and that he liked him as a guard in his scheme.

Kubiak has a very good track record in the NFL and knows offense. He knows better than any guy making a scout profile what Cleveland is. If he thought he was Brian O'Neil 2.0, he would have never moved him to guard. Tackles are far more valuable than guards, and with the impending hole at LT that Reiff was about to leave, it was a position of need on this team.

There are a ton of examples of tackles taken around where Cleveland was who turned into great guards. More than that have turned into great left tackles in fact. Hopefully Cleveland becomes another one of those success stories and we are set for years at a position that we have sucked at for a very long time.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by Pondering Her Percy » Fri Mar 26, 2021 1:19 pm

StumpHunter wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:29 am
Pondering Her Percy wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:00 am


I dont think anything has been said right now because they are keeping their options open. The tackle FA market is still fairly solid. The tackle to guard ratio in the draft is a mixed bag. They arent going to say Ezra is their next left tackle if they plan on pursuing Eric Fisher. They also arent saying Cleveland is staying at guard because if they decide to not go after any tackles at all and draft someone like Trey Smith, Cleveland could end up at tackle. They are basically using Cleveland as a chess piece right now. I dont think it's right, but that's what they are doing.

Regardless, I literally do not understand how they can evaluate Cleveland coming out and say to themselves, "yeah he's not ready to play left tackle in the NFL".....a position he's played his entire life. But they can say "yeah he'll be ready to play RIGHT guard by mid season".....a position he's never played in his life and is on the complete opposite side of the line. Ezra Cleveland was Brian O'Neill 2.0 coming out of college. Hell, look at the original post in this thread, analysts were even saying his pro comparison is Brian O'Neill.

So I've said it a few times and I'll say it again....would you ever consider moving O'Neill to LG? Absolutely not. I'm not even sure if I would out of complete desperation. But that is exactly what we are doing with Cleveland. Putting him at a position he was never comfortable at to begin with out of desperation. Dru Samia was so bad last year that he just simply couldnt go in at RG any longer. It was claimed to be a wrist injury but I dont buy it. For as hard nosed as Zim comes off, he cant flat out tell a guy he's benched because he doesnt want to hurt any feelings (yeah, think about it, since the day he was hired, how often has he ever benched a guy and there have been plenty that deserved benching).

But anyways, yes it's 100% out of desperation. If Cleveland moves and all you have is Cole who is somewhat of a question mark, they have zero starting guards. In their current situation and what's left on the market and not many early round guards in the draft, they dont want zero starting guards right now. They are going to do what they always do with that position, put a damn bandaid over it. Fill it with a former tackle or a former center or a cheap low risk "possible solid reward" signing. I thought they ignored 3 tech DT for a long time but man, this is just getting ridiculous at this point. How does every Vikings fan on planet earth recognize we need better guards and we keep putting a bandaid over it. That's just plain ignorant. And I dont think that starts with Spielman, I dont think it's our offensive scheme. This is Zimmer's stubborn as# still coaching like he has Earl Campbell in the backfield and wants the most elite running game in the NFL and not giving a damn if he protects his QB or not.

I just dont get how you can say or think that Cleveland is not a tackle when you've literally never tried him there is beyond me. It makes absolutely no sense.
I don't believe Zimmer identifies guys who are guard versus tackles in the draft.

Kubiak probably had the most to say in that decision, and probably told Spielman he liked Cleveland in the draft, and that he liked him as a guard in his scheme.

Kubiak has a very good track record in the NFL and knows offense. He knows better than any guy making a scout profile what Cleveland is. If he thought he was Brian O'Neil 2.0, he would have never moved him to guard. Tackles are far more valuable than guards, and with the impending hole at LT that Reiff was about to leave, it was a position of need on this team.

There are a ton of examples of tackles taken around where Cleveland was who turned into great guards. More than that have turned into great left tackles in fact. Hopefully Cleveland becomes another one of those success stories and we are set for years at a position that we have sucked at for a very long time.
I guess I dont get why you have such a hard time understanding this. They had O'Neill and Reiff. The best chance for Cleveland to get on the field last year was at guard, not tackle. Their philosophy is to put the best players they can onto the field regardless of position. This is especially true when it comes to OL. Even if Cleveland isnt a guard, he's better than Dru Samia, I get that. But Cleveland is your future. Or at least your potential future. Not Riley Reiff. I wanted Reiff gone last year.

But make no mistake, if you remember correctly, that Trent Williams deal was suppose to go down the beginning of day 2. Williams bails and they draft Cleveland. My wonder is, how well did they really even scout Cleveland. Did they take Cleveland just because the Williams deal didnt happen? My guess is yeah, they didnt scout him all that much given they think he's a guard when he's literally never played the position in his lifetime.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by StumpHunter » Fri Mar 26, 2021 1:32 pm

Pondering Her Percy wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 1:19 pm
StumpHunter wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:29 am

I don't believe Zimmer identifies guys who are guard versus tackles in the draft.

Kubiak probably had the most to say in that decision, and probably told Spielman he liked Cleveland in the draft, and that he liked him as a guard in his scheme.

Kubiak has a very good track record in the NFL and knows offense. He knows better than any guy making a scout profile what Cleveland is. If he thought he was Brian O'Neil 2.0, he would have never moved him to guard. Tackles are far more valuable than guards, and with the impending hole at LT that Reiff was about to leave, it was a position of need on this team.

There are a ton of examples of tackles taken around where Cleveland was who turned into great guards. More than that have turned into great left tackles in fact. Hopefully Cleveland becomes another one of those success stories and we are set for years at a position that we have sucked at for a very long time.
I guess I dont get why you have such a hard time understanding this. They had O'Neill and Reiff. The best chance for Cleveland to get on the field last year was at guard, not tackle. Their philosophy is to put the best players they can onto the field regardless of position. This is especially true when it comes to OL. Even if Cleveland isnt a guard, he's better than Dru Samia, I get that. But Cleveland is your future. Or at least your potential future. Not Riley Reiff. I wanted Reiff gone last year.
I specifically didn't write the "greatest" position of need to avoid just this argument. Whether the 3rd string tackle or 3rd string guard was the biggest need is irrelevant. We know the Vikings were ready to move on from Reiff, and the Vikings did not have the future at LT on the roster. It made sense to play Cleveland at LT in camp if that is where they felt he was best suited to play as the Vikings did have a need there and it would have taken injuries for him to see the field at either guard or LT.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by VikingPaul73 » Fri Mar 26, 2021 1:52 pm

This is a great point, Stump and the fact that they didn’t work him out at LT at all during camp (I don’t remember so I’m taking your word for it ) is definitely evidence that they just don’t view him as a LT

The counter argument is that, despite the depth chart, internally the Vikings had ZERO confidence in either Elflein or Samia and were desperate for any contingency plan. (Which wasn’t the case last year at LT with Hill and Reiff)
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by S197 » Fri Mar 26, 2021 2:38 pm

Cleveland was buried on the depth chart at guard. As in 3rd string. There are old articles you can read about how he struggled with technique. In his defense, last offseason was far from normal and he barely got the reps you would get even in shorts and shells.

But the strategy for him should have been known the second he was drafted. You shouldn’t be drafting a guy in the 2nd without a very clear understanding of how he helps your team. But we’re talking about a GM that has had a bottom of the NFL o-line for seven consecutive years. So having no strategy or a haphazard strategy isn’t all that surprising.

I still think the wildcard people aren’t considering is Udoh. Either at guard or tackle. He was going to start at RT before Reiff took the pay cut so he’s clearly in the mix. I wouldn’t be surprised if our line is some combo of O’Neill, Cleveland, Bradbury, Udoh and Cole. With no lineman drafted in day 1 or 2.

That’s not what I want but again, you need to consider who is at the helm. Recall the last time we were this needy of a guard, we drafted Mike Hughes and waited until the 6th to draft a guard. Who was then cut in camp.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by StumpHunter » Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:35 pm

S197 wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 2:38 pm
Cleveland was buried on the depth chart at guard. As in 3rd string. There are old articles you can read about how he struggled with technique. In his defense, last offseason was far from normal and he barely got the reps you would get even in shorts and shells.

But the strategy for him should have been known the second he was drafted. You shouldn’t be drafting a guy in the 2nd without a very clear understanding of how he helps your team. But we’re talking about a GM that has had a bottom of the NFL o-line for seven consecutive years. So having no strategy or a haphazard strategy isn’t all that surprising.

I still think the wildcard people aren’t considering is Udoh. Either at guard or tackle. He was going to start at RT before Reiff took the pay cut so he’s clearly in the mix. I wouldn’t be surprised if our line is some combo of O’Neill, Cleveland, Bradbury, Udoh and Cole. With no lineman drafted in day 1 or 2.


That’s not what I want but again, you need to consider who is at the helm. Recall the last time we were this needy of a guard, we drafted Mike Hughes and waited until the 6th to draft a guard. Who was then cut in camp.
Do we know that he was going to start at RT if Reiff didn't take that cut? I heard rumors of that as well as Hill playing LT. Seems like the Vikings could still do that if that were the case, which would mean the Vikings are taking a DE in the 1st this year.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by S197 » Fri Mar 26, 2021 5:21 pm

StumpHunter wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 3:35 pm
S197 wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 2:38 pm
Cleveland was buried on the depth chart at guard. As in 3rd string. There are old articles you can read about how he struggled with technique. In his defense, last offseason was far from normal and he barely got the reps you would get even in shorts and shells.

But the strategy for him should have been known the second he was drafted. You shouldn’t be drafting a guy in the 2nd without a very clear understanding of how he helps your team. But we’re talking about a GM that has had a bottom of the NFL o-line for seven consecutive years. So having no strategy or a haphazard strategy isn’t all that surprising.

I still think the wildcard people aren’t considering is Udoh. Either at guard or tackle. He was going to start at RT before Reiff took the pay cut so he’s clearly in the mix. I wouldn’t be surprised if our line is some combo of O’Neill, Cleveland, Bradbury, Udoh and Cole. With no lineman drafted in day 1 or 2.


That’s not what I want but again, you need to consider who is at the helm. Recall the last time we were this needy of a guard, we drafted Mike Hughes and waited until the 6th to draft a guard. Who was then cut in camp.
Do we know that he was going to start at RT if Reiff didn't take that cut? I heard rumors of that as well as Hill playing LT. Seems like the Vikings could still do that if that were the case, which would mean the Vikings are taking a DE in the 1st this year.
When they thought Reiff wasn’t coming back, they moved O’Neill to LT and Udoh to starting RT. It’s possible it could have been a battle between him and Hill. Apparently they also worked Udoh at guard during the year. With a year under Cleveland’s belt, this could change, but I still think Udoh is a dark horse starter somewhere along the OL.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by VikingPaul73 » Thu Apr 01, 2021 2:02 pm

pretty good transcript on interview with Zimmer on the Daily Norseman. its worth a read.

https://www.dailynorseman.com/2021/3/31 ... transcript

Here are his specific comments on Ezra. Disappointing to read because it looks like they don't have a specific plan for him, but will just move him around based on circumstances beyond his control (who in FA is willing to sign vet minimum, who falls in the draft, etc.).

Also, as some on this board have speculated, it looks like the Vikings believe they have "fixed" the OL as he states at the end that what they have done so far in FA will enable them to go BPA in draft, regardless of position
Sigh.... :x
On Ezra Cleveland’s position:

Right now he’s right guard, but all those things can change, depending on what happens the rest of the way in free agency, and what else happens in the draft. We don’t know what’s gonna happen in those places, and obviously there’s other positions that we can draft, I’m sure at some point we’re gonna try to address all those things but, I think what we’ve done so far in free agency has allowed us to take the best player available wherever he is.
another disappointing but not unexpected comment:
On replacing Riley Reiff:

At this point we’ve got Rashod Hill back, we’ve got Udoh back, we got O’Neill, we got Cleveland, so we’ll be able to take care of those situations. All those guys are good players, and so we’ll continue to figure it out and go from there.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by VikingPaul73 » Tue Apr 13, 2021 9:32 am

https://www.dailynorseman.com/2021/4/12 ... t-a-tackle

Speculative, but an interesting take. The author believes and builds a case that the Vikings are looking for a G not a T in the draft. Not sure if that means Ezra to LT or O'Neill to LT and Udoh to RT.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by Pep2Moss » Tue Apr 13, 2021 3:21 pm

I think the Vikings "pecking order" is

Slater
Vera-Tucker
Darrisaw

Slater and AVT can play inside or out. Darrisaw is a pure LT. I honestly have no idea why they wouldn't take the pure LT there and be done with it. They overthink these linemen sometimes. Could Udoh play RG and Cleveland LG? Take Darrisaw and you have a pretty solid line IMO. Slater might be a little stout to be an NFL LT, but he has the mechanics. I tell you not having that 2 realllllllllly sucks this year. They could deal down, but you're looking at Teven Jenkins who I believe is a RT prospect only and Cosmi or Davis who project to be guards....Dickerson could be a very good guard down the bottom of round 1 as well.
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Re: do Vikings view Ezra as a G or a T?

Post by CharVike » Sat Apr 17, 2021 9:58 pm

Pep2Moss wrote:
Tue Apr 13, 2021 3:21 pm
I think the Vikings "pecking order" is

Slater
Vera-Tucker
Darrisaw

Slater and AVT can play inside or out. Darrisaw is a pure LT. I honestly have no idea why they wouldn't take the pure LT there and be done with it. They overthink these linemen sometimes. Could Udoh play RG and Cleveland LG? Take Darrisaw and you have a pretty solid line IMO. Slater might be a little stout to be an NFL LT, but he has the mechanics. I tell you not having that 2 realllllllllly sucks this year. They could deal down, but you're looking at Teven Jenkins who I believe is a RT prospect only and Cosmi or Davis who project to be guards....Dickerson could be a very good guard down the bottom of round 1 as well.
I'm not a fan of trading down. I'm only guessing but it looks like they want guys that can play anywhere. IMO Ezar has LT written all over him. You couldn't draw it any better. They see G. I think he's to slight for that spot. It's there scheme and know it much better than me. Any size fits all.
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