Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, Kevin O'Connell, Minnesota Vikings

Getty General manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and Head coach Kevin O’Connell of the Minnesota Vikings.

Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell has been honest about needing another team to be “complicit” in their pursuit of a QB in the 2024 draft.

The self-reported “Quarterback Killer ” – a name he says has been jokingly bestowed upon him for his resistance to reaching for the position in the draft – O’Connell could get an assist from an unlikely source.

Former Chicago Bears quarterback Jim Harbaugh, now Head Coach of the Los Angeles Chargers, could do the Vikings a “solid,” and help J.J. McCarthy land in Minnesota via trade.

“I was talking to someone last week who knows Los Angeles Chargers coach Jim Harbaugh very well, and asked about his over-the-top praise of McCarthy, which has gone well beyond what you’d normally hear from a college coach talking about a quarterback. This person explained it by laying out Harbaugh’s approach with his teams—and how he’s always treated his quarterbacks almost like they’re his sons,” Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer wrote on April 24.

“So it shouldn’t be surprising that Harbaugh, sitting there at 5, could dictate McCarthy’s landing spot, should the Cardinals stick at 4. And if he were to do McCarthy a solid, the most obvious place to send him, of course, would be Minnesota.”

How good is J.J. McCarthy’s arm? 🤔

“If I’m drafting someone in the top five, I want to know that I can trust him to win games with his right arm.” —@kurt13warner

Harbaugh had McCarthy for three years at Michigan. The duo won a National Championship with him at the helm this past season.

But questions have surfaced about McCarthy, particularly as a passer.


Vikings Could Land ‘Best QB’ in 2024 Draft

Drake Maye, Minnesota VikingsDrake Maye, Minnesota Vikings

GettyJ.J. McCarthy #9 and head coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines.

McCarthy has the fewest pass attempts per game of the top prospects. Michigan leaned on an elite defense and strong rushing attack instead. McCarthy had five games with fewer than 20 passing attempts last season and one with only eight throws.

Harbaugh has touted McCarthy as the crown jewel of the class, though.

“It’s well documented I think he’s the best quarterback in the draft,” Harbaugh told reporters at the Annual Meeting in March. “That’s just what I think is my opinion. He’s the one who plays quarterback of all the quarterbacks that are in the draft. There’s great quarterbacks in the draft. I think he plays quarterback the best of any quarterback in the draft.”

McCarthy is the only one of the top six quarterback prospects to play under a former NFL head coach. That could give him a leg up in his transition to the league.

He is also the youngest of any QB prospect in the class.

The Vikings would have Sam Darnold to man the position while McCarthy develops. They also have top-tier offensive skill players, a solid offensive line, and respected voices in O’Connell and Quarterbacks Coach Josh McCown.


Proposed Trade Lands J.J. McCarthy With No. 5 Overall Pick From Chargers

Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, Minnesota VikingsKwesi Adofo-Mensah, Minnesota Vikings

GettyGeneral Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah of the Minnesota Vikings.

ESPN’s Kevin Seifert suggested this hypothetical trade package in a league-wide mock draft exercise, securing the No. 5 overall pick from LA and the Vikings’ QB of the future.

Vikings get:

– 2024 first-round pick (No. 5 overall)

Chargers get:

– 2024 first-round pick (No. 11)
– 2024 first-round pick (No. 23)
– 2024 fourth-round pick (No. 108)
– 2025 third-round pick

“This trade was the cleanest way to ensure the Vikings got a first-round quarterback and true successor to Kirk Cousins. They used substantial draft capital but preserved their 2025 first-round pick,” Seifert wrote on April 24. “In terms of coaching and personnel, McCarthy lands in the best spot of all the first-round passers.”

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