Can J.J. McCarthy Be the Next Anthony Edwards?

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The Minnesota Timberwolves had arguably the most exciting season in franchise history, and a significant reason for it was Anthony Edwards’s personality and performance. The Minnesota Vikings have their hopeful foundational quarterback in J.J. McCarthy. He doesn’t have to be the same person, but can he have a transformational impact?

Can J.J. McCarthy Be the Next Anthony Edwards?

When the Minnesota Timberwolves drafted Anthony Edwards, there were swirling questions about his desire and drive to be a basketball player. Of course, teams, or rather employers, want the sport to be who you are rather than something you do. Those definitions have now become things to suggest of the 22-year-old superstar, and pre-draft narratives couldn’t seem more off base.

J.J. McCarthy
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J.J. McCarthy didn’t face questions about his work ethic or desire to play football, but wondering if he could thrive while being asked to lead a team is something that makes sense while operating in Jim Harbaugh’s run-heavy offense. At some point during the 2024 season, we will have answers to how goofy those questions may have been, and in the years to come, we’ll find out what kind of maturing and development there is for a quarterback stepping into the shadow of Kirk Cousins.

It’s pretty unrealistic to expect any athlete to rival Anthony Edwards’s personality. Truly an individual and a talent of his own, the Minnesota Timberwolves superstar is charismatic and as jovial as they come. What J.J. McCarthy could rival, though, is a welcoming persona that gets fans behind him and a skillset that draws consistent compliments as well.

Minnesota 2024 NFL Draft. Watch as QB 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.

For as long as Justin Jefferson remains employed by the Minnesota Vikings, he should be expected to be the face of the franchise.

While the quarterback position is at the forefront, talented wide receivers often walk to the beat of their own drum. McCarthy doesn’t need to be the most vocal individual, but a steadying presence complete with results is something that fans will immediately get behind.

Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports.

It has been since the days of Kevin Garnett and Randy Moss that a pair of Minnesota teams have had dueling superstars at the same time. McCarthy and Edwards running in the same circles, or at least propelling their teams to the same heights, would be an incredible sight and something more than welcomed by the intertwined fandoms as a whole. 

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.