Does Who Plays Quarterback for the Vikings Matter?

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Although the Minnesota Vikings don’t hit the field until Sunday, the big news comes on Wednesday as they announce who will start at quarterback. Josh Dobbs will retain his starting role, but does it really matter?

Does Who Plays Quarterback for the Vikings Matter?

After the Vikings flopped on Monday Night Football against the Chicago Bears, there was plenty of reason to look at the offense. Putting up just ten points against a bad opponent while being at home, everything was worth putting under the microscope. With Josh Dobbs throwing four interceptions, it was his performance worthy of the most scrutiny, but it doesn’t appear a change is coming.

Does Who Plays
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It’s not a surprise that the Vikings would stick with Dobbs out of the bye. They traded for him to give themselves a capable option behind rookie Jaren Hall, and he performed admirably when stepping in despite a real acclimation period. The turnovers punctuated his horrid game against the Bears, but at least a pair of them were deflections off the hands of wide receivers. He could be expected to hit a new level with the additional practice time.

For Dobbs to work the best, though, head coach Kevin O’Connell must take a significantly better step forward than he showed in their last outing. Dobbs makes up for his passing deficiencies by utilizing his legs. Minnesota has no running game, so getting Dobbs in space keeps the defense honest. There should be plenty of opportunity to find success against the Las Vegas Raiders, but it will be on all parties involved to find it.

Minnesota Vikings Head Coach Kevin O’Connell addressed the media from the TCO Performance Center on Wednesday, December 6th, 2023. The Vikings had a quarterback debate off the bye week in 2023, and O’Connell announced incumbent starter Joshua Dobbs would play in Week 14 at the Las Vegas Raiders.

Realistically, the Vikings aren’t winning games down the stretch because of their quarterback. What Dobbs did against the Atlanta Falcons was beyond impressive, but that should be seen as the outlier, not the standard. Minnesota lost all semblance of a legitimate starting option when Kirk Cousins went down. Unless Hall stepped in and immediately became the next Patrick Mahomes, it simply wasn’t going to happen.

With the quarterback position more of a band-aid on a bullet hole, the Vikings are operating with an offense that works because the signal caller doesn’t make mistakes. Whether it’s Dobbs or one of the other options ultimately taking over, the team will go as far as Justin Jefferson, Jordan Addison, and T.J. Hockenson position them to do so.

Justin Jefferson Weighs in
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Ultimately, another poor outing for Dobbs could take the spot away from him, but there is no reason another week can’t be utilized to make that determination. Nick Mullens doesn’t present much of a ceiling; without mobility, he may not bring much to the table either. Unfortunately, Hall isn’t being given more run after losing the opportunity to a concussion, but his chance should still be ahead of him.

How the Vikings quarterback plays will remain the focal point for the offense the rest of the way, but it will largely indicate multiple things happening around them. O’Connell can continue orchestrating a path toward the playoffs, but everyone must figure it out quickly.

Ted Schwerzler is a blogger from the Twin Cities that is focused on all things Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Vikings. He’s active on Twitter and writes weekly for Twins Daily. As a former college athlete and avid sports fan, covering our pro teams with a passion has always seemed like such a natural outlet.