Minnesota Vikings select Cam Smith in first round of 2023 NFL Mock Draft

Cam Smith (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)
Cam Smith (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) /
1 of 5

Minnesota Vikings find impact players throughout this 2023 NFL Mock Draft

The Minnesota Vikings were one of the surprise teams in the NFL during the 2022 season after going 13-4. They were able to reach 13 wins, and also win the NFC North, due in large part to fourth quarter heroics and overcoming deficits to win games.

That magic ran out in the Wild Card Round against the New York Giants and the Vikings have already begun making notable changes after firing defensive coordinator Ed Donatell.

The focus for the Vikings now turns to the offseason and how they can improve the roster to hopefully make a deeper playoff run in 2023. The needs are on both sides of the ball and in this 2023 NFL Mock Draft, with the help of Pro Football Focus’ Mock Draft Simulator, they accomplish addressing a number of those.

2023 NFL Mock Draft for the Minnesota Vikings

Minnesota Vikings
Cam Smith (Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports) /

player. 850. . Cornerback. Gamecocks . Cam Smith. 23

One of the reasons the Minnesota Vikings had to come back in so many games was their defense struggled, in particular their pass defense which allowed the second most passing yards per game (265.6). The cornerback position is one of the top positions of concern as they have three set to be free agents, starting with Patrick Peterson.

Fortunately for the Vikings, this year’s class of cornerbacks is one of the best in recent memory. One of those players is Cam Smith out of the University of South Carolina and is a great fit for the Minnesota Vikings.

He played in 32 games over four seasons for the Gamecocks and had six interceptions with 18 passes defended. Smith was their top cornerback and was routinely asked to cover some excellent wide receivers in the SEC.

Ideally, the Vikings bring back Peterson for one more season with Cam Smith stepping in as the starter opposite the veteran. He certainly has the potential to take over as the top cornerback for this defense after his rookie season.