Would the Vikings Consider a New QB before Week 1?

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When the Minnesota Vikings turned the page on Kirk Cousins, they ultimately decided to reset the quarterback position. That wound up shaking out with Sam Darnold being brought in as a veteran free agent and J.J. McCarthy being drafted as a first-round pick. Who joins them remains to be seen, but it may not be anyone on the current roster.

Would the Vikings Consider a New QB before Week 1?

Last season, the Minnesota Vikings had to watch an ugly quarterback carousel following an Achilles injury that ended Kirk Cousins’ season. Between Josh Dobbs, Nick Mullens, and Jaren Hall, none of them were good enough to be consistently reliable. Dobbs is gone, and while the other two remain, running it back where either could be in the game may not make sense.

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Hall is an older prospect already, and he was well over his head being thrust into a role he wasn’t prepared for. The Vikings could keep him on the practice squad this season, but it would be hard to imagine a scenario in which playing Hall would be a positive outcome.

On the flip side, Mullens has started many games at the NFL level. He gained a handful last year for the Vikings, but his relative carelessness with football leaves him open to exposure. Should Darnold go down and Mullens shield McCarthy, there may not be much to suggest a better outcome than simply letting the rookie play.

It seems as though Minnesota’s plan is to allow Darnold a chance to work. They could catch lightning in a bottle, and he may have something like a Baker Mayfield 2023 season. If McCarthy is being developed behind the scenes, then grabbing a more tested free-agent veteran to act as Darnold’s insurance makes some sense.

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Ryan Tannehill is the top remaining name on the open market, and the only other true option may be Trevor Siemian. Of course, both would instead be employed rather than still sitting out in the open, but both are likely looking for preseason opportunities to present themselves, and that’s when Minnesota would come knocking as well.

If Hall is sent to the practice squad, then Mullens would either need to be traded or cut. The Vikings aren’t going to carry three quarterbacks, and they may not desire to have more than two. Allowing McCarthy to be unbothered about going into a game unexpectedly while having someone like Tannehill back up Darnold could help give the rookie a greater perspective.

Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill (17) looks for a receiver against the Indianapolis Colts during the second quarter at Nissan Stadium Sunday, Oct. 23, 2022, in Nashville, Tenn. NFL Indianapolis Colts At Tennessee Titans

Minnesota still has money to spend, and what they do with it (if anything at all) is something to monitor.

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.