EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (CBSLA/AP) — The Minnesota Vikings have selected UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr with the ninth overall pick of the NFL draft.
The Vikings traded down one spot with Cleveland, picking up a fifth-round pick to do it.
The Vikings entered Thursday night with needs at quarterback and all over the defense. But the Jacksonville Jaguars chose Blake Bortles at No. 3 and the Vikings decided to pass on quarterbacks Johnny Manziel to address a defense that ranked 31st in the league last season.
Barr had 10 sacks for the Bruins last season and will upgrade arguably the biggest weakness on defense. The Vikings have former Pro Bowler Chad Greenway in the position group, but were sorely lacking playmakers at the other two spots.
Barr played running back at Los Angeles’ Loyola High School