With just a week until the 2023 NFL Draft officially starts, the Minnesota Vikings are doing their homework on just about every positional player available. It’s no secret that the new regime is trying to find their QB of the future. With Kirk Cousins on his last year of his deal with the team, it figures to be his last season in purple and gold. I will be taking a look at the depth of this years QB class, and fill you in on who the Vikings may have their eye on in the middle-to-late rounds.
The first quarterback that the team is been keeping a close eye on is DTR, aka Dorian Thompson-Robinson. The UCLA product is 23 years old and stands 6 foot 1 inch tall. In last years college football season, DTR produced 3,100-plus yards with 27 touchdowns to 10 interceptions and a QB rating of 157.1. The Vikings have been rumored to have had a pre-draft meeting with the UCLA QB.
Next up is Aiden O’Connell out of Purdue. As most late round QB prospects, O’Connell’s play took a slight dip in 2022 after a good 2021 season. Very rollercoaster-esque film from the past two years, but it would be interesting to see if KOC and Kwesi could mold him into the future of the franchise. In his last year at Purdue, Aiden O’Connell posted 3,400-plus yards with 22 touchdowns and 13 interceptions. He also had a 88.1 quarterback rating.
Another late round QB prospect for the Vikings is none other than the Cinderella storied QB from last years college football playoff, Max Duggan. Duggan had a stellar last year at TCU throwing for almost 3,700 yards with 32 touchdowns and a measly 8 interceptions, which gave him a QB rating of 109.2. The crazy part of his unbelievable run in the CFP, Duggan wasn’t even supposed to be the starting QB for TCU last year, but took complete control of his opportunity and led his team to a place it had never been before. Can Duggan carry on his stellar performance from his last year at TCU to Minnesota?
The last QB that the Vikings might take a swing at in the later rounds of the draft next week would be Stetson Bennett. In Stetson’s last season as a Georgia Bulldog he had 27 touchdowns with only 7 interceptions, leading to an impressive 110.1 passer rating. The Back-to-Back National Champion Bennett saw 15 of his former teammates leave for the 2022 NFL Draft and was still able to lead his team to a second straight title. There is a concern about his ceiling, but Bennett’s toughness, competitiveness, and just the sheer will to win should say enough. He did run into some off the field issues celebrating his second title, but it’s 2023, who doesn't love a good ole celebration? Many experts believe Bennett could end up un-drafted, but would the Vikings take a low round flyer on the back-to-back champ?
Moving on from one of the best quarterbacks in franchise history might not be as easy considering the numbers Kirk is capable of, but like all of these rookie QBs, there is a worry about Kirk’s ceiling. There’s just no way we trade up into the top 5 and take one of the top projected QBs like Stroud, Levis, or Richardson. There is just not enough capital in our arsenal to do so. But would the Vikings be willing take a late round QB in this years draft to sit behind Kirk for his last year on his deal?