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Vikings' smokescreens on Matt Kalil are working

Everyone knows who the No. 1 and No. 2 picks in Thursday's NFL draft will be. That's why it's the Minnesota Vikings' job to create confusion about what they will do at No. 3.

So far, it's working.

Here's Stephen F. Holder from the Tampa Bay Times on Monday:

"There are strong suggestions in NFL circles suggesting that (Matt) Kalil is not a lock with the Vikings' No. 3 pick, creating a scenario where he could wind up with the Bucs."

If the Vikings passed on the USC offensive tackle at No. 3 -- presumably for LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne -- then the Cleveland Browns would have to consider him at No. 4. With Joe Thomas already in place, they might be hesitant to use such a high pick on a right tackle.

Vikings coach Leslie Frazier suggested last week that left tackles aren't "game-changers," which sounds like a transparent smokescreen. But the Vikings have done a good job behind the scenes at creating real doubt about their pick.

Welcome to draft week. The drama starts with Minnesota.

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