Chemistry Started Friday for J.J. McCarthy

Vikings
Minnesota Vikings 2024 NFL Draft. Watch as QB J.J. McCarthy addressed the media from the TCO Performance Center on Friday. The Vikings traded up one spot on the draftboard with the New York Jets for McCarthy.

The Minnesota Vikings are still ways out when it comes to kicking off training camp, and the full complement of their roster isn’t expected to be in the building when rookie minicamp kicks off Friday, but the first step in J.J. McCarthy’s building chemistry begins now.

Chemistry Started Friday for J.J. McCarthy

It’s great that the Minnesota Vikings were able to land a quarterback they believe can be the foundation of their future. Using the 10th overall pick on J.J. McCarthy, Kevin O’Connell gets his first opportunity to develop a passer that can be a cornerstone for the Minnesota franchise. Before McCarthy begins to work with Justin Jefferson or the rest of his offensive weapons, chemistry begins with his head coach.

Minnesota Vikings quarterback J.J. McCarthy at the first day of rookie minicamp on May 10th, 2024, in Eagan, Minnesota. TCO Performance Center. McCarthy was drafted by the Vikings with the 10th overall pick on April 25th, 2024, in Detroit.

During the draft process, O’Connell undoubtedly provided McCarthy with snippets of designs that would come straight from his playbook. Looking to understand how quickly the rookie could adapt to his style, he’ll now be thrown entirely into the fire. O’Connell will look to install his full offense with his young quarterback, and in doing so, it will take chemistry between the player and coach.

Part of drafting McCarthy was establishing a level of comfort between the quarterback and his new coach. Going through the pre-draft process, the Vikings knew that there needed to be a level of comfort between the player and the leader. It’s one thing for a late-round pick to be thrown into the fire, but the jobs of both O’Connell and Kwesi Adofo-Mensah rely on the marriage with McCarthy working out.

Chemistry
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports.

As the prospect from Michigan works through his developmental process, feeling comfortable with O’Connell no matter the situation is a must. He has to be able to take criticism and voice his feelings and frustrations as well. It was more than clear that Kirk Cousins and O’Connell had that level of comfort with one another, and it’s why the veteran flourished in a new system.

McCarthy must learn plenty at this level if he’s going to be successful, but developing rapport with those leading him might be chief among them. Over the weekend, rookie minicamp gives him a head start on that process before a full roster surrounds him.


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.

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