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Vikings to host TCU LB Paul Dawson for pre-draft visit

About a year after drafting one of the top outside linebackers available in the NFL draft in Anthony Barr, the Minnesota Vikings will take a close look at perhaps the best inside linebacker this year: Texas Christian's Paul Dawson.

Dawson arrives in Minnesota Tuesday to meet with the club Wednesday, and has subsequent visits scheduled with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Atlanta Falcons and San Francisco 49ers, according to NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport. He already has visited the Carolina Panthers and Kansas City Chiefs -- the club NFL Media analyst Lance Zierlein sees as the best fit for Dawson's need of a solid mentor.

Dawson is among the top draft prospects with character concerns, some of which Dawson addressed in a pre-draft diary entry for USA Today. They'll no doubt be addressed again by Vikings officials on Wednesday. A starting linebacker is among Minnesota's primary draft needs, and if Dawson is their choice to fill it, their picks at No. 45 (second round) and No. 76 (third round) would probably be the right time to make a move.

Dawson's schedule for private workouts includes the Falcons, Buccaneers, New England Patriots and Carolina Panthers, according to Rapoport. NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock rated Dawson as the best inside linebacker in the draft following the NFL Scouting Combine in February, despite his poor showing there. Dawson showed significant improvement at TCU's pro day.

*Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter **@ChaseGoodbread*.

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