Potential Trade Partner Emerges Amid Vikings’ Rumored Interest in 2024 QB Class

Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, Minnesota Vikings

Getty General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah.

The Minnesota Vikings are showing interest in the top quarterbacks of the 2024 draft class. Sitting at No. 11, however, they are seemingly just out of range and would need a trade to get into a better position to secure one.

Fortunately for them, one team is not shying away from its willingness to trade back.

That team is the Arizona Cardinals, who sit at No. 4 and saw General Manager Monti Ossenfort declare his stance on the subject.

“It’ll be a big neon sign that says, ‘Open,’” Ossenfort told reporters on March 20. “I don’t like it blinking; that kind of messes with my eyes. But, yeah, we’re always going to be listening I think we’ll always have the conversation. We may not get to a 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.

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

Ossenfort’s comments came on the same day the Vikings sent Quarterbacks Coach Josh McCown to visit USC’s Caleb Williams. And it was just two days before they sent McCown to Ann Arbor to see Michigan’s J.J. McCarthy.

The Vikings are poised to trade up, acquiring the No. 23 overall pick from the Houston Texans.

They are also expected to make an aggressive push to get into the top five of the draft, per ESPN’s Matt Miller on March 22, presumably for McCarthy.

Vikings Insider: Drake Maye a ‘More Likely’ Trade Target Than J.J. McCarthy

Drake Maye, Minnesota Vikings

GettyDrake Maye #10 of the North Carolina Tar Heels.

The Athletic’s Alec Lewis responded to a reader in the March 20 edition of his mailbag, choosing the “more likely” scenario: the Vikings trade three first-round picks (two this year plus their 2025 first-round pick) to move up for Drake Maye or two firsts (Nos. 11 and 23) for  McCarthy.

Lewis, who had addressed the matter in a previous answer, chose the latter.

“If they’re OK ascending to No. 4 or 5 for an option like McCarthy — which feels like a major if — they could conceivably keep their future firsts,” Lewis wrote in his initial answer.

“I think the first outcome [Maye] is much more likely than the second [McCarthy].”

Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer, replying to a similar query in his mailbag, speculated that the Vikings would prefer that, noting the connection to McCown. But he also cautioned about the slim chances they would be able to get into position for Maye barring a slide.

“I’d say the Minnesota Vikings move to No. 4 for J.J. McCarthy [is more likely],” Breer wrote on March 20. “That’s not to say they prefer the Michigan quarterback.

“It’s because of what it sure seems like is going to happen within the top three. And at this point … teams that have tried to trade into that range have been met with polite no’s from the Chicago Bears, Washington Commanders and New England Patriots.”

J.J. McCarthy Could Be Vikings’ Default Trade Target

J.J. McCarthy, Minnesota Vikings

GettyJ.J. McCarthy #9 of the Michigan Wolverines.

Maye began the predraft process as the consensus No. 2 quarterback prospect, if not the second overall pick, in this class. He has fallen behind LSU’s Jayden Daniels in some eyes despite no games taking place.

Maye is still expected to go in the top three selections, though. That could leave the Vikings to choose between McCarthy, Oregon’s Bo Nix, or Washington’s Michael Penix Jr.

It appears unlikely they acquired a second first-round pick for Nix or Penix based on reports.

But several other teams have also shown interest in McCarthy. That includes the Bears, Patriots, Las Vegas Raiders, and New York Giants. Each had their quarterbacks coach in attendance for McCarthy’s pro day. The Denver Broncos also lurk as a threat to leapfrog the Vikings.

NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein compared McCarthy to former New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, whom Broncos head coach Sean Payton found his greatest success with.

The Vikings could have no choice but to get aggressive and trade up for McCarthy.

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