Welcome to Purple Jesus Diaries' 2012 NFL Draft-or-Bust Off where we cover all items related to the 2012 NFL Draft as pertains to the Minnesota Vikings. At this point in the year, we will continue reviewing this crop of draft picks. We've already looked at Matt Kalil, Harrison Smith, Josh Robinson, Jarius Wright, Rhett Ellison, Greg Childs, Robert Blanton, and Blair Walsh. Still working on players drafted after the fourth round, we really dumb it down to keep everyone's interest piqued. So here we are, meet 7th round pick from NC State, linebacker Audie Cole ...
NAME! His name be Audie Cole, and I can't quite place it, but he reminds me of someone. Norris Cole? Audie Murphy? Murphy Brown? I don't know what's going on anymore. Anyway, he's a 6'4", 246 pound linebacker who came from NC State. Keep this in mind - Russell Wilson, the quarterback everyone was spastic over at Wisconsin, left NC State because he thought the team sucked, or he went to play baseball, or whatever. Either way, NC State wasn't good enough for him, and he's not even that great of a player. So you have to wonder about Audie Cole, right?
NICKNAME! I'm partial to Audie A4 ... But so far Cole is wearing number 57 for the Vikings. A4 wouldn't make much sense. So ... A5Q7? That just sounds like an android name. Audie Audie Auxin-free? Cole Customer? Audie Cole-Trane? I'm sure you'll think of something good, too. Or, we could just go with Rancid Rage, his heavy metal band name. He's on Twitter, too, by the way. Check that last link.
GOOD! From the ALWAYS RELIABLE NFL.com analysis:
Cole is a strong player who is noticeably explosive when throwing his body into linemen. He can make good tackles when playing in the box and when the play comes to him. He is an obviously competitive player who seems to enjoy taking on linemen and fitting up with them before using his arm strength to shed. He can maul a tight end on the line but has difficulty running with them.
So he's essentially like our new Hulk. That has to be good, right? Having a Hulk on your team? It worked for the Avengers, anyway.
BAD! ALSO from the always reliable NFL.com analysis. In case you can't tell, I'm being fascetious:
Cole was a productive tackler for North Carolina State, but most of that production came on plays that went right at him. He has difficulty turning his hips and running in space, and would be a liability in coverage at the next level.
Liability in coverage? But the Vikings run a Cover TwOh I get it. Crap. Sooo ... Special teams player? Wedge buster? That would be an awesome title to put on your business card.
SO! Not to sound unfair or anything, but I'd say expectations are pretty low for Audie Cole. Not to say he can't have an impact, or won't improve, or anything. As a guy who can make tackles on the football field, he's already approximately 30 times more talented than half of our defense last year. But where can he make the biggest impact? Does he ever see a starting position? The team IS thin at linebacker (thinner than Candince Swanepoel), so he's clearly coming into a position of opportunity. What he does with it remains to be seen, obviously. Since he's already signed his contract, though, you'd have to think that he's at least partially going to be given every opportunity to make it on the Vikings.
And on top of that, he clearly loves America. How could you not want him on your team then? USA! USA! USA!