Our Emphatic Prediction for the Vikings Next QB

Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE Copyright (c) 2006 Kyle Terada.

The Minnesota Vikings pulled off the splashiest of splash trades on Friday, sending two 2nd-Round picks to the Houston Texans for Houston’s 2024 1st-Rounder (Pick No. 23) and a future late-round pick swap.

Our Emphatic Prediction for the Vikings Next QB

The move positions Minnesota to draft its quarterback of the future after Kirk Cousins left the organization six days ago. Of course, the Vikings still have to conduct one more trade to get high enough on the 2024 draftboard for a blue-chip prospect, but most expect that to happen between now and April 25th.

We asked VikingsTerritory’s writers to predict Minnesota’s first draft pick — in light of the trade news with the Texans — and the responses were damn near unanimous.

Drake Maye
Prediction Maker: Josh Frey

purple rumor mill
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports.

The Vikings have put themselves in a great position to trade up for their quarterback of the future. Drake Maye fits well into what Kevin O’Connell wants to do with his offense. The UNC product is a strong pocket passer but also has plenty of mobility to move around and pick up yards with his legs. The Vikings can turn him into a successful quarterback right away, considering the weapons they’ll be able to surround him with.

Drake Maye
Prediction Maker: Dustin Baker

Vikings Next QB
Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports.

On January 11th — so over two months ago — I was asked to deliver a bold prediction for the Vikings’ offseason. This was the reply:

Trade up the Board for Drake Maye: The trade partner is unclear right now, but the Vikings find a way to trade a king’s ransom to move up the board and secure the services of Drake Maye from North Carolina. The man is perfect for the Vikings offense, intermixed with Josh Allen-like mobility and a wonderful arm. Kevin O’Connell gets his pocket passer, and the Vikings fan base gets a mobile quarterback. This will cost a fortune, but such is life.

— Dustin Baker | VikingsTerritory.com on January 11th, 2024

The prediction shall not be changed now.

Drake Maye
Prediction Maker: Kyle Joudry

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports.

Likely the popular answer, but let’s roll with Drake Maye. Kwesi Adofo-Mensah is a bold decision-maker. Doing the Houston deal was pretty stunning and a reminder that he’s not afraid to swing for the fences.

Drake Maye
Prediction Maker: Wes Johnson

A Drake Maye and Justin Timberlake GIF

With the third pick in the first round of the NFL draft, the Minnesota Vikings, via NE, select Drake Maye, QB North Carolina.

Maye is the guy with whom the front office and coaching staff will hang their hats to lead the franchise deep into the playoffs year after year. The signaling was evident with the hiring of Maye’s High School coach, former NFL QB, and current Vikings QB coach Josh McNown. Maye has some work to hone his skills but arguably lands in the perfect spot (coaching staff and surrounding cast) to make that happen.

Drake Maye
Prediction Maker: Ted Schwerzler

Rookie QB
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports.

The Vikings have the ammo to move up, and Josh McCown’s hiring makes it too straightforward. They get their QBOTF.

Drake Maye
Prediction Maker: Cole Smith

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports.

Friday’s trade with the Texans gives the Vikings ammunition to move into at least the top five. It seems like an aggressive move, saying, “We’re going after our guy, not just whatever QB falls to us.”

Drake Maye
Prediction Maker: Ali Siddiqui

Which Rookie QBs
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports.

The Vikings find a way to move up to the third spot without giving up a 2025 first-rounder.

J.J. McCarthy
Prediction Maker: Adam New

Today Mock Draft
Nov 25, 2023; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; Michigan Wolverines quarterback J.J. McCarthy (9) throws during the second half of the NCAA football game against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Michigan Stadium. Ohio State lost 30-24. © Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA TODAY NETWORK.

I’m not convinced the top 3 teams in the draft are moving. The Vikings may need to get aggressive to make sure they land the QB4, probably having to trade up to get J.J. McCarthy.

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 OverTheCap.com.