The 6 Likeliest QBs to End up with Vikings — Ranked

Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports.

The Minnesota Vikings pulled off a spiffy trade eight days ago, sending two 2nd-Round picks to Houston for the Texans’ 2024 1st-Rounder (Pick No. 23) and a late-round pick swap.

The 6 Likeliest QBs to End up with Vikings from Draft — Ranked

Most believe the move was a precursor to a second trade, which should transpire sometime between now and April 25th. The Vikings are expected to choose a quarterback in Round 1 of April’s draft, with or without a second trade.

And according to oddsmakers, these are the six likeliest quarterbacks to end up in Minnesota. They’re ranked in ascending order (No. 1 = most likely to become a Viking).

6. Caleb Williams
Moneyline for MIN = +3500

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports.

College: USC
Week 1 Age: 22
Height: 6’1″
Weight:
215

It’s not that the Vikings wouldn’t be in on Williams for the quarterback after Kirk Cousins. It’s that the Chicago Bears told all last week when they traded Justin Fields to the Pittsburgh Steelers for pocket lint.

Williams will be a Bear, and Minnesota will see him twice annually. It’s the closest thing to a sure-fire outcome this draft has to offer. He won’t be available to Minnesota. Plain and simple.

5. Jayden Daniels
Moneyline for MIN = +1200

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Quarterback Jayden Daniels 5 runs the ball as the LSU Tigers take on Georgia State in Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, November 18, 2023. © SCOTT CLAUSE/USA TODAY Network / USA TODAY NETWORK.

College: LSU
Week 1 Age: 23
Height: 6’4″
Weight:
210

A forgotten man among Vikings fans in the last week, Daniels is still in the mix to become the purple team’s quarterback in 2024. It’s just a longshot at the moment.

Most of the NFL draft community has decided that the Washington Commanders will draft Daniels, and that’ll be that. However, what if Minnesota secretly covets the LSU alumnus, and Vikings fans prematurely wrote him off?

There’s always a chance that general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah pulls off an additional splashy trade with Washington — all the way up to No. 2 on the draftboard — and nabs Daniels. It isn’t that far-fetched.

4. Bo Nix
Moneyline for MIN = +500

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College: Oregon
Week 1 Age: 24
Height: 6’2″
Weight:
220

Nix has decent odds to become the Vikings’ next signal-caller because he won’t sniff the Top 10. The man could even fall into Round 2, increasing the odds of Minnesota drafting him if they don’t trade up for one of the following men on the list.

Of all possible QB1 solutions, it’s safe to say this man is the one Vikings fans want the least.

3. Michael Penix Jr.
Moneyline for MIN = +450

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Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports.

College: Washington
Week 1 Age: 24
Height: 6’3″
Weight:
215

Penix Jr. was all the craze — for the Vikings and other teams — between the College Football Semifinal and National Championship. However, he and the Huskies fired up a rough outing against Michigan, losing the title game to J.J. McCarthy and friends. That loss seemed to fling Penix Jr. out of the Top 10, for better or worse.

Like Nix, he can be obtained by the Vikings outside of the Top 10, and because Minnesota lives at pick No. 11, oddsmakers plop him in the middle of Vikings odds.

He has a lengthy injury history, so Vikings loyalists are lukewarm on Penix Jr.

2. Drake Maye
Moneyline for MIN = +350

Rookie QB
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College: North Carolina
Week 1 Age: 22
Height: 6’4″
Weight:
230

Odds soared for Maye to the Vikings after Adofo-Mensah fired off the trade with Houston. Now, if he can get the Washington Commanders or New England Patriots to listen to his next trade offer, Maye to Minnesota can become reality.

That’s easier said than done, but at the start of the offseason, Maye in purple was a pipe dream. Fast forward to mid-March, and it’s the second-best-case scenario.

1. J.J. McCarthy
Moneyline for MIN = -115

Vikings QB1
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports.

College: Michigan
Week 1 Age: 21
Height: 6’2″
Weight:
220

McCarthy ranks the highest on this list because he feels unusually gettable for the Vikings. If Williams, Daniels, and Maye go off the board in any order during the Top 3 picks, there’s always McCarthy at No. 4 or 5.

The Arizona Cardinals own the No. 4 pick, and this week, general manager Monti Ossenfort said his team was open for business. Asked by reporters if he’d be willing to trade down from Arizona’s No. 4 spot, Ossenfort didn’t hold back. “There will be a big neon sign that says ‘open.’ I don’t like it blinking — that kind of messes with my eyes — but we’ll always have the conversation. We may not get to the point where the deal makes sense, whether it’s at 4 or anywhere we’re picking, but we’re always going to have the conversation,” the executive replied.

Ossenfort added, “And if it makes sense and it’s attractive to building our team, then it’s something we’ll certainly consider no matter where we’re at in the draft.”

Not to be too dramatic, but this basically guarantees that the Vikings have a great chance of drafting the fourth quarterback left on the board, and most believe, as of March 22nd, that’ll be 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.

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