Vikings go all the way to Berlin to land a freakish WR in the NFL Draft –

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CHICAGO — Not with the expectations of their first-round pick at the same position, but the second wide receiver drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the 2016 NFL raft made big news, from Eden Prairie to Berlin.

As in, Germany.

After the selection of Ole Miss product Laquon Treadwell in the first round, the Vikings picked German Moritz Boehringer in the sixth round with the 180th pick.

Boehringer became aware of football at age 17, when he saw a video of Vikings running back Adrian Peterson. That sparked his interest and after four years in a German league and a well-attended pro day at Florida Atlantic University, Boehringer became the first European player ever drafted directly to the NFL.

“I can’t describe how I feel right now, just happy to be drafted,” he said Saturday. “Just my family, everybody who helped me to get to this part.”

As part of a surreal scene near Buckingham Fountain in Grant Park on Saturday, Boehringer entered the enclosed studio of NFL Network for an on-air interview. During the talk with host Rich Eisen and analyst Mike Mayock, Mayock — a 10th-round pick in the 1981 draft — spoke directly to Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer while looking into the camera, urging Zimmer, whom he referred to as a good friend, to draft Boehringer. Moments later, the Vikings obliged.

“I follow the Vikings, just because (Peterson) brought me to football,” he said in the television interview.

He didn’t know a few minutes later he’d be on the phone with Zimmer, after Mayock made his plea.

“Mike Zimmer, Rick Spielman. We have Mo-Bo sitting right here with us. You like big football players …” Mayock said.

Boehringer said when he went to his first organized football practice, the team had five players. He’s attempting to make a significant jump to the NFL.

Boehringer ran 4.38 and 4.44 in the 40 and is massive at 6-foot-4 and a half inch and 227 pounds.

His hometown never produced enough interest to field a team and Boehringer ended up playing for the Schwabisch Hall Unicorns for a year. He caught 70 passes for 1,461 yards and 16 touchdowns in a league comprised primarily of German and French players with varying degrees of professional football experience. analyst Dane Brugler said of Boehringer “Looks to create after the catch and flashes the balance and vision to transition from a receiver to ballcarrier…pulls away from defenders after the catch…has the catch radius to make inaccurate quarterbacks look like precision passers. Excellent athletic traits, but receiving traits are underdeveloped, lacking an understanding of how to create separation on his own…not used to beating press coverage…plays too tall and needs to better sink off the snap and at the top of routes.”

Moritz Boehringer is making quite the leap to the NFL. (Twitter @AroundTheNFL)

Vikings go all the way to Berlin to land a freakish WR in the NFL Draft –