J.J. McCarthy Just Won All the Hearts

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

The Minnesota Vikings needed to find a replacement for their starter at quarterback after Kirk Cousins departed for the money with the Atlanta Falcons. They used the 10th overall pick on J.J. McCarthy, and any uncertainty that came with it might have just departed on Friday during rookie minicamp.

J.J. McCarthy Just Won All the Hearts

Kwesi Adofo-Mensah played his cards close to his chest while working through NFL Draft prospects. With an eye on Drake Maye as the fit between him and quarterbacks coach Josh McCown, they also had a high grade on Michigan’s J.J. McCarthy. Rather than mortgage the future with the New England Patriots, they stood pat and grabbed the run-first offense signal caller.

j.j. mccarthy
Minnesota 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.

There could have been plenty of consternation when considering McCarthy as the heir apparent to Cousins, but he has quickly dominated the narrative for Minnesota. Stepping in immediately following the draft while being introduced alongside fellow first-round pick Dallas Turner, and then highlighting the rookie minicamp exercises this weekend, fans are now at a fever pitch in support of him.

Within the first hour of posting, a video featuring little more than some throwing motions from McCarthy garnered over 250k impressions on Twitter. Of course, there is very little to truly be gleaned from a practice such as this, but the excitement for McCarthy is something the franchise hasn’t seen in years.

Following his first run-through for the Vikings, McCarthy talked to the media and got behind the microphone for the first time. Of course, Kevin O’Connell will mold his quarterback in his image over the years to come, but the amount of poise and personality a player can show while still young is something to keep an eye on.

The way a player handles the media, especially one as scrutinized as a quarterback, is all part of the process. This weekend will be an exercise in McCarthy being under the microscope, and if the early returns are anything to be believed, then he’s in a great spot to succeed in the future.

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.