One Particular Vikings Trade Isn’t Happening

Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

The Minnesota Vikings enter the final week of draft preparation. Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, Vikings general manager in his third offseason, focuses on the big tickets in the three-day event and wants to facilitate a trade into the top five of the draft. To make that deal, he must find a second party, one of his colleagues, willing to draft later than scheduled.

One Particular Vikings Trade Isn’t Happening

One Vikings Trade Isn't Happening
Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports.

The Washington Commanders hold the second pick, the New England Patriots the third, the Arizona Cardinals the fourth, and the Los Angeles Chargers the fifth. Because either the New York Giants could select a quarterback with their sixth overall pick or the Denver Broncos and the Las Vegas Raiders could trade up for one, Minnesota’s sweet spot is viewed in the top five.

However, Washington’s general manager, Adam Peters, says the coveted second overall pick behind presumed top choice Caleb Williams is not for sale.

LSU’s Heisman winner Jayden Daniels is -240 to be selected second overall, according to Draft Kings, followed by North Carolina’s Drake Maye (+130).

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Washington hasn’t had a good quarterback situation since Kirk Cousins departed in 2018. Last year’s starter, Sam Howell, was traded to Seattle as Geno Smith’s backup. Marcus Mariota was signed in free agency, and the new regime hired former Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury as offensive coordinator. Kingsbury’s spread offense needs mobility at the quarterback spot, so Daniels joining the Commanders is the next logical step.

The Vikings can now move up to three or four and still grab their quarterback of the future. Ironically, on the same day Peters basically ruled out a trade, Patriots interim GM Eliot Wolf did the opposite: “We’re open to anything. Moving up, moving down. We’re open for business in the first round and every round.”

Vikings Vegas Odds
Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports.

That third overall pick would cost the Vikings both first-rounders in 2024 and perhaps the top pick in 2025. While the price is steep, it would guarantee the purple team the third QB on their draft board, whether that is Maye or Michigan’s J.J. McCarthy.

Both players have intriguing profiles for the Vikings because they feature the necessary athleticism to shine off-schedule, an essential aspect in today’s league. Maye possesses crazy arm talent and can make every throw imaginable. Comparisons to Josh Allen and Justin Herbert are the obvious consequence. In addition to that, Maye’s size is prototypical for a QB.

purple rumor mill
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports.

McCarthy, meanwhile, is poised in the pocket, and his mechanics are superior to Maye’s. Because he wasn’t forced to carry his offense at Michigan, his skill set as a passer is underrated. Any coach’s dream is to have a strong-armed, smart quarterback who is always in control.

The Vikings have not drafted a quarterback in the top ten in franchise history. If they do it this year, he will walk into the best situation imaginable for a rookie passer as the offense features Justin Jefferson, Jordan Addison, T.J. Hockenson, and a solid offensive line with outstanding tackles. Having a pair of former NFL QBs, Kevin O’Connell and Josh McCown, on the coaching staff is also helpful.

The Vikings are favored to draft McCarthy, but Maye is a viable option if they can reach the third overall pick.

Janik Eckardt is a football fan who likes numbers and stats. The Vikings became his favorite team despite their quarterback at the time, Christian Ponder. He is a walking soccer encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms, and Classic rock is his music genre of choice. Follow him on Twitter if you like the Vikings: @JanikEckardt