Questions Answered: One Surprise Vikings Cut, Cine and Booth Troubles, McCarthy’s Start

Aaron Jones
Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones (33) is tackled by Minnesota Vikings linebacker Patrick Jones II (91) during their football game on Sunday, January, 1, 2023 at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis. Wm. Glasheen USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin.

The following questions are about current Minnesota Vikings topics, answered by VikingsTerritory. Today is the May 13th edition, addressed in a from-the-hip fashion. If you have questions, please email them to [email protected].

One Surprise Vikings Cut, Cine and Booth Troubles, McCarthy’s Start

Also, please note: These are opinion-based responses. Some answers will be incorrect from time to time. But we’ll try to keep that to a minimum.

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports | Jan 7, 2024; Santa Clara, California, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Sam Darnold (14) before the game against the Los Angeles Rams at Levi’s Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports.

Q: Who’s one Vikings player that could be a surprise cut this summer?

Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Answer: Patrick Jones II.

Minnesota beefed up its EDGE room this offseason, adding Jonathan Greenard, Andrew Van Ginkel, Dallas Turner, Jihad Ward, and UDFA Gabriel Murphy. No matter how one interprets it, that is not good news for Jones II, who enters Year No. 4 in 2024.

These are the Vikings outside linebackers as of mid-May:

OLB1: Jonathan Greenard
OLB2: Dallas Turner
OLB3: Andrew Van Ginkel
OLB4: Patrick Jones II
OLB5: Jihad Ward
OLB6: Andre Carter II
OLB7: Gabriel Murphy
OLB8: Owen Porter
OLB9: Bo Richter

The team will keep four or five of those players, meaning Jones II will have to dazzle this summer to maintain a roster spot.

If you want to be even more shocking, it never makes too much sense that Minnesota continues to employ fullback C.J. Ham while not using the man much on offense.

Q: Do you think Lewis Cine and Andrew Booth will get cut this summer, as the Pioneer Press suggested over the weekend?

Cine Update Is
Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

Answer: Probably one — but not both.

Booth played quite well in 2023, and nobody talks about it. It’s almost as if it’s forbidden to compliment him.

It doesn’t make much financial sense to cut either player, but if forced to choose one or the other, we’d predict Cine as the roster cut. Minnesota simply has “too many” good safeties, and that circumstance could keep Cine off the field — again — or on the roster’s chopping block.

Booth actually has a chance to earn a starter’s job this summer. The field is wide open.

Q: What did you make of J.J. McCarthy’s rookie minicamp?

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.

A: It was fantastic.

Sadly, fans can’t learn too much about a player from two-day event of throwing the football a little bit.. But McCarthy did all the small things right, especially on the microphone, portraying an aura of fearlessness in learning the Vikings’ playbook.

Then, he showed up at the Timberwolves game, which was pretty cool.

As far as a rookie minicamp can provide, McCarthy “looked the part” and got an A+. Now, of course, that just has to translate to the summer and beyond.

Dustin Baker is a political scientist who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Subscribe to his daily YouTube Channel, VikesNow. He hosts a podcast with Bryant McKinnie, which airs every Wednesday with Raun Sawh and Sal Spice. His MIN obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

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