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Vikings edge rusher Dallas Turner: Get to know the other first-round pick

Dallas Turner, SEC Defensive Player of the Year, drafted by Vikings. Athletic freak molds game after Danielle Hunter, hits big, plays basketball.

Dallas Turner, the exceptional SEC Defensive Player of the Year, draws inspiration from players like Danielle Hunter and showcases his basketball background with impactful hits on the football field that spark debate.

In a surprising turn of events, Turner was not chosen until the 15th pick in the recent NFL Draft. The Minnesota Vikings then made a bold move to secure him at No. 17, adding a dynamic edge rusher to their roster. Here are five key points to consider about this promising talent.

1. Turner's exceptional athleticism was on full display at the NFL Scouting Combine, where he outperformed all other edge rushers with an impressive 4.46-second 40-yard dash and top vertical jump. His standout performance at Alabama, stepping up in the absence of Will Anderson Jr., showcased his skills with 14.5 tackles for losses and 10 sacks in the previous season. Turner looks up to players like Danielle Hunter for their relentless drive and pass-rushing expertise.

2. As a five-star recruit, Turner lived up to the hype with a standout career at Alabama, culminating in being named the 2023 SEC Defensive Player of the Year. His journey began in Florida, where he earned accolades as a high school standout before making his mark at St. Thomas Aquinas. Turner's success as a recruit paved the way for his impressive college career and eventual entry into the NFL.

3. Known for his hard-hitting style of play, Turner's physicality has been a topic of controversy, with a recent hit on former LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels sparking debate. Despite the criticism, Turner remains committed to playing at full throttle and within the rules of the game.

4. Turner's basketball background adds another dimension to his athletic prowess, having excelled on the court before transitioning to football. His father's legacy as a professional basketball player further fuels Turner's drive to succeed in his own athletic endeavors.

5. The Vikings' interest in Turner was evident through multiple meetings during the pre-draft process, including an official visit to the TCO Performance Center and discussions at the combine in Indianapolis. Turner's comfort with the team and excitement to be part of Brian Flores' defense bode well for his future development and success in the NFL.

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