Vikings Grand QB Plan Could Hinge on One Trade Partner

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From the moment the Minnesota Vikings pulled off an unforeseen trade on March 15th, all things seemed possible in obtaining a quarterback of the future.

Vikings Grand QB Plan Could Hinge on One Trade Partner

General manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah sent two 2nd-Round picks to Houston for the Texans’ 2024 1st-Rounder (Pick No. 23) and a late-round pick swap. And that was two days after Kirk Cousins formally signed with the Atlanta Falcons.

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Folks realized the trade positioned Minnesota to trade up the board one more time — they’re in better shape than any quarterback-needy team in the draft per 2024 capital to make a deal — and suddenly, Drake Maye (North Carolina) and J.J. McCarthy (Michigan) seemed like realistic options.

To get one of those men — fans predominantly want Maye — the New England Patriots appear to be the main target. New England holds the third overall pick, and the Vikings swinging a trade with the Patriots would effectively guarantee either a Maye or McCarthy draft selection in 23 days.

Here’s evidence of Vikings fans’ preference:

And per most pundits’ tallies, these are the Patriots’ long-term roster needs:

  • Quarterback
  • Wide Receiver
  • Offensive Tackle
  • EDGE Rusher

That’s at least four roster holes — ones that could begin filling if New England accepts a king’s ransom trade from Minnesota. For the Vikings to climb into the draft’s No. 3 spot, they may have to donate three 1st-Rounders.

A little over a week ago, Patriots head coach Jerod Mayo told the Boston Globe, “I know everyone likes to think they have the special formula to picking players. But honestly, the guaranteed way to win is to accumulate more picks. So if we don’t feel convicted (about whom to draft) at No. 3, we are willing to do that, as well.”

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Mayo continued, “If we take a quarterback at three, that means we are (convinced) that this player is really the future of this organization. … Going back to your point that we said earlier, there are multiple pieces on this team that we want to fill. So, if you can gather more picks, that definitely helps you out. I can put more chips on the table.”

Therefore, New England is at least open to the idea of doing business with Minnesota or another quarterback-needy club.

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Of course, Adofo-Mensah could trade with another team, like the Arizona Cardinals at No. 4 or the Los Angeles Chargers at No. 5, but nothing quite seals the deal like a Patriots transaction. If the purple team can get that high on the draftboard, it won’t have to box out other teams pursuing quarterbacks like the Denver Broncos, Las Vegas Raiders, or New York Giants at No. 4 and No. 5.

The Patriots own the sweet spot. Unless the Washington Commanders swerve off the Vegas prediction suggesting they’ll draft Jayden Daniels, Maye to Minnesota is achievable through a deal with New England.

Any trade talks after New England in the draft’s pecking order leaves the outcome to chance.

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 Vikings obsession dates back to 1996. Listed guilty pleasures: Peanut Butter Ice Cream, ‘The Sopranos,’ Basset Hounds, and The Doors (the band).

All statistics provided by Pro Football Reference / Stathead; all contractual information provided by