NFL Analyst Reveals Shocking Prediction For Vikings QB

JJ McCarthy, Sam Darnold, Minnesota Vikings
NFL Analysis Network

The Minnesota Vikings selected J.J. McCarthy with the 10th overall pick of the NFL Draft late last month, and everyone is just assuming he will be the Vikings’ starting quarterback come Week 1.

But will he?

Minnesota also signed Sam Darnold in free agency, and while Darnold has been a big disappointment in the NFL, he could still represent a bridge starter for the club in 2024.

Kay Adams of the Up & Adams Show thinks Darnold could be in for a big year, and says that if anyone is going to play the role of this year’s Jared Goff, it will be him.

“I wonder who this year’s Jared Goff is,” Adams said. “I feel like Baker [Mayfield] got himself into that world last year. He got paid, he turned it around. I wonder if it’s Sam Darnold. Hear me out: [Jordan] Addison, Justin Jefferson, [head coach] Kevin O’Connell, high-flying offense. I know that that division’s better but could Sam Darnold turn it around?”

The difference is that Goff had already experienced some success before 2024. So did Mayfield.

Darnold, who played his collegiate football at USC, was originally selected by the New York Jets with the third overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft.

He spent the first three years of his career with the Jets, with his best season coming in 2019 when he made 13 starts and threw for 3,024 yards, 19 touchdowns and 13 interceptions while completing 61.9 percent of his throws and posting a passer rating of 84.3.

New York gave up on him after his third season, trading him to the Carolina Panthers. He lasted two years with the Panthers, making 17 starts and totaling 16 touchdowns and 16 picks.

Last offseason, Darnold signed with the San Francisco 49ers as a backup to Brock Purdy. He completed 28 of his 46 passes for 297 yards, a couple of touchdowns and an interception on the year.

Darnold is still just 27 years old, so it’s not like he’s ancient. However, it seems hard to imagine that he is suddenly going to start producing at a high level.

Then again, Geno Smith did it in his 30s, so I guess it’s possible for Darnold.

We’ll see what happens in training camp and preseason, but there may be a chance that Darnold actually beats out McCarthy for the starting job in Minnesota.

The Vikings surely want to preserve McCarthy, and they may feel that sitting him early on may be the best course of action.

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