EAGAN, Minn. - The Vikings drafted quarterback Kellen Mond out of Texas A&M on Friday night, beginning their second day of activity in the 2021 NFL Draft with the 66th overall pick.
The selection of Mond marked the highest use of a selection on a QB since 2014 when Minnesota traded back into the first round to draft Teddy Bridgewater.
Mond is just the second quarterback ever drafted in a third round by the Vikings, joining Hall of Famer Fran Tarkenton (1961). The pick was announced by Hall of Fame defensive tackle John Randle.
Kellen Mond ‘Just Kept Getting Better & Better,’ Shows High Ceiling 2021 Minnesota Vikings Draft Picks
1. Record Breaker
Name a quarterback record, and simply find Mond's name atop the Texas A&M leaderboard.
Passing yards and touchdowns? Yep and yep, with 9,661 and 71.
Completions and attempts? For sure, with 801 and 1,358.
Mond also leads the Aggies all-time in total offense (11,269 yards), which ranks seventh in SEC history, and finished tied with Johnny Manziel's 93 career touchdowns responsible for. Mond and Manziel are tied for 10th in SEC history in that category.
Mond discussed his approach with Vikings Entertainment Network's Gabe Henderson after he was drafted by the Vikings and said, "One of the biggest things I've learned is to take every rep like a Super Bowl rep, and whether that's in practice, or me just as a normal person in the facility, but just treating everything like a business and as a professional."
2. Backed up rating with rare combination
A native of San Antonio, Texas, Mond transferred from Reagan High School, where he lettered as a sophomore and junior, to IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, for his senior season.
Mond set IMG Academy records for passing touchdowns (20) and rushing touchdowns (18) in a season, earning a rating as the nation's No. 1 dual-threat QB.
He backed it up in Aggieland, becoming the third quarterback in SEC history to pass for at least 9,000 yards and rush for 1,500 plus yards, joining Mississippi State's Dak Prescott and Florida's Tim Tebow.
Prescott was a fourth-round pick by the Cowboys in 2016; Tebow was picked 25th overall by the Broncos in 2010.
3. Boosted his stock
Mond impressed in postseason games, going 3-0 in bowl games as a starter, and was named the 2019 Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl MVP.
He also shined at the Reese's Senior Bowl in January, the last time he wore his college helmet. Mond earned MVP honors for the game after completing 13 of 25 passes for 173 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed once and passed once on a pair of successful 2-point conversions.
Mond became the sixth QB in a row to win MVP honors at the annual all-star game, a run that began with Prescott in 2016. The next four players were Davis Webb, Kyle Lauletta, Daniel Jones and Justin Herbert. Vikings RB/KR Ameer Abdullah was the last non-QB to win the honor (2015).
In addition to making good on his opportunity to impress in-person in Mobile, Alabama, Mond also received credit for designing his workout at Texas A&M's Pro Day, rather than relying on a consultant.
"I think that was big for me. One, to show my leadership, but also, I think truly if I'm going to be my own biggest self-critic and be self-aware of what I need to work on but also certain feedback on things I need to improve, I think it's best that I construct my own pro day," Mond told NFL Network's Andrew Siciliano before the draft. "That's exactly what I wanted to do and really push the ball down the field. That was something that was huge for me.
"A lot of guys have their quarterback tutors, the guys who construct their pro day, get everybody in line and tell everybody what route they have, but I think the quarterback at the next level is going to be on the field, and why not start that at your pro day to make sure everybody - receivers, running backs and tight ends - are in line. So I think that showed my football IQ but also showed the type of leadership skills I have," Mond added.
4. Lessons from Dad
The influence of Mond's father, Kevin, runs deep.
From tossing the football when Kellen was 2 to instilling disciplinary values that Kevin implemented during his eight years of service in the U.S. Army, Kevin has helped guide Kellen to this moment:
Kellen further described the influence that the military service of his father and other family members has had on him:
Mond will be joining a quarterbacks room that includes Vikings starter Kirk Cousins and backups Jake Browning (a 2019 undrafted free agent) and Nate Stanley (a 2020 seventh-round pick).
While the Vikings plan to keep Cousins at QB1 for his fourth season in Purple, Mond might try to take over as DJ1 in Minnesota.
Prior to the 2020 season, he touted his playlist during an interview with Travis L. Brown of The Eagle (Bryan/College Station, Texas).
"I think I have the best songs because everybody knows the songs that I play. I could be a great DJ," Mond said.