Is Dalvin Cook a better version of Devonta Freeman?
Freeman played sparingly as a rookie out of Florida State in 2014 before becoming a staple in the end zone with the Atlanta Falcons. Freeman's 27 total touchdowns the last two seasons are the second most of any running back in the NFL. Only Arizona's David Johnson has more (33).
The man who coached Freeman and Cook at Florida State thinks Cook has more talent than Freeman.
"I’ve coached a lot of great backs; Devonta Freeman, who’s an All-Pro in the league right now playing as well as anybody in the NFL," Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher told ESPN. "Devonta was a phenomenal player. But Dalvin was more dynamic because of the home-run speed and from that standpoint I haven’t coached against a back or coached a back that was so dynamic that every time he touched the ball, he could score a TD."
In an interview with ESPN's First Take, Cook said that he compares best with Jamaal Charles, who was arguably the NFL's most explosive back before multiple ACL injuries slowed him down.
"You tell me a better back in the draft that runs with power inside, can bounce the plays outside, can catch the ball out of the backfield, can split out and catch it and when he gets in green grass, he doesn't move the sticks – he changes the numbers on the scoreboard," said Fisher on "The Rich Eisen Show."
Another guy who thinks Cook is the real deal: Jameis Winston, who called Cook the "best running back in the whole damn league" during a fiery halftime speech last season.
There's a long list of respected football talking heads who were shocked to see Cook still available late in the first round of the NFL Draft, much less through 40 picks before the Vikings snagged him on Day 2. Danny Kanell called Cook's drop "unwarranted" while Kirk Herbstreit said he was one of the two best players in the draft.
If Cook turns into a star player the Vikings might have to send the Packers a thank you card. According to Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the Packers were down to cornerback Kevin King and Cook before deciding King was the safer pick with the first selection in the second round.