After speculation that he might not go in the first round of Thursday night’s NFL Draft, the Minnesota Vikings made UCFs Mike Hughes the 30th pick overall.
Hughes showcased his first-round talent for the undefeated Knights plenty of times, including his dramatic kickoff return for a TD late in their win over USF to finish a perfect 11-0 regular season .
However, his previous stint at North Carolina and troubled past didn’t prevent him from going in the first. As we discussed earlier this week, Hughes definitely has first round talent, but an allegation of sexual assault from his days in Chapel Hill re-surfaced that could have caused him to fall.
Yet, the Vikings didn’t let that stop them from taking the chance.
He started 12 of 13 contests, garnering first-team All-American Athletic Conference honors as a defensive back (44 tackles, four interceptions — one returned for a touchdown, team-high 11 pass breakups) and second-team accolades as a returner (20 attempts, 635 yards, two touchdowns on kick returns; 13 attempts, 233 yards, one touchdown on punt returns).
Landing in Minnesota Hughes will be a key contributor in Mike Zimmer’s scheme.
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