Rivals Believe Vikings Will Swing Blockbuster Trade for Top QB Prospect: Report

Kevin O'Connell, Minnesota Vikings

Getty Head Coach Kevin O'Connell of the Minnesota Vikings.

The Minnesota Vikings may be close to zeroing in on a target quarterback in the 2024 draft, though they will likely need to make a trade to land him.

They currently hold the Nos. 11 and 23 overall picks, and they have maintained a consistent presence on the pre-draft pro day circuit.

The Vikings have had representatives at the pro days for Caleb Williams, J.J. McCarthy, and Drake Maye. Quarterbacks Coach Josh McCown attended all three workouts. They did not show face at the pro days for Bo Nix or Michael Penix.

Their planned meeting with Jayden Daniels fell through, possibly as his future gains clarity.

That gives the Vikings two prospects to potentially choose from with Williams the presumed No. 1 pick to the Chicago Bears: Maye and McCarthy. And Maye could be their preference.

“The Vikings, [it] would be a perfect scenario for them,” ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler said on “SportsCenter” on March 29. “There’s a belief among some teams that Minnesota could try to trade up to get him. It would take a lot, but they are armed with two first-round picks to try to make it happen.”

Maye is the second-youngest prospect among the top six quarterbacks projected to come off the board in the first round of the draft (April 25).

“I’ve heard from multiple league execs he has the most upside of any of the quarterbacks in this draft, maybe any player in this draft,” Fowler said. “He’s got that Josh Allen, Justin Herbert build. I’m not saying he’s them. But he’s got some of those shades.

“If you can let him sit for a year behind the scenes, he can really develop into an All-Star.”

Proposed Vikings Trade Moves Up for Drake Maye

Drake Maye, Minnesota Vikings

GettyDrake Maye #10 of the North Carolina Tar Heels.

ESPN’s Matt Miller released the latest iteration of his 2024 mock draft on March 27. In it, he crafted a hypothetical trade that would get the Vikings the No. 3 overall pick from the New England Patriots.

Vikings get:

– 2024 first-round pick (No. 3 overall)

Patriots get:

– 2024 first-round pick (No. 11)
– 2024 first-round pick (No. 23 overall via CLE)
– 2025 first-round pick

“The Vikings badly need a solution under center,” Miller wrote. “Maye is big-armed and mobile, with the tools to thrive under coach Kevin O’Connell. With a star left tackle in Christian Darrisaw, arguably the league’s best receiver in Justin Jefferson and a very good WR2 in second-year player Jordan Addison, the Vikings’ offensive supporting cast is perfect for a rookie quarterback.

“Maye is raw, and in many situations it would be best for him to sit and learn for a year, but the Minnesota structure could get him on the field early. He has thrown for 7,929 yards and 62 TD passes over the past two seasons.”

The Vikings signed Sam Darnold to a one-year, $10 million contract. But he is viewed as little more than a stop-gap solution.

Maye would be landing into a comfortable situation from a coaching standpoint too.

Drake Maye Praises Vikings QB Coach

Josh McCown, Minnesota Vikings

GettyQuarterbacks coach Josh McCown of the Minnesota Vikings.

McCown coached Maye in high school. He also used to watch film of the former Tar Heel with Darnold while the two were with the Carolina Panthers last season, per The Athletic’s Alec Lewis on March 20.

Maye called McCown “awesome,” per The Charlotte Observer’s Mike Kaye on March 29.

“He’s always so positive,” Maye said. “He never says anything negative, and I think that’s the best thing about him. He’ll coach you up though.”

Combine that with the high opinions from current players about O’Connell, the strong supporting cast including a potentially fired-up Aaron Jones, and an innovative defense to back him up, Maye would be landing in one of the most QB-friendly situations around the league.