J.J. McCarthy learning from ‘real scars’ of new Vikings coach

J.J. McCarthy
J.J. McCarthy / Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

The hype train for new Minnesota Vikings quarterback J.J. McCarthy hasn't picked up a ton of steam since the first-round draft pick is not expected to be the team's starting quarterback when the regular season starts.

While McCarthy learns the offense and gets up to NFL speed, he will have the opportunity to gain knowledge from his coaches and teammates. In the meantime, Sam Darnold will be taking the first team reps for the Vikings.

Throwing a rookie into a starting can have mixed results. Some young quarterbacks thrive under the pressure of starting immediately while others can crumble under the pressure of taking on such a huge role so early in their career.

J.J. McCarthy learning from ‘real scars’ of new Vikings coach

44-year-old Josh McCown joined the Minnesota Vikings this offseason to become the team's quarterbacks coach and the former third-round pick of the Arizona Cardinals spent time with a dozen NFL franchises in his career.

McCown's experience and knowledge could be a huge benefit for a rookie like J.J. McCarthy. However, not all Vikings fans might be welcoming McCown to Minnesota with open arms considering his history with the purple and gold.

In 2003, McCown was the quarterback of the Arizona Cardinals and threw a 28-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Nate Poole which put the nail in the coffin of Minnesota's playoff hopes for the season.

When talking with Mcarthy, McCown showed the rookie film of that touchdown and a throw on the same route in 2015 when he played with the Cleveland Browns. This time, the result was a pick-six instead of a game-winning touchdown.

""Sometimes as a coach you're installing plays or talking about plays and there's like real scars there. That was one for me.""

Josh McCown via ESPN

Deciding whether to attempt a throw or not is one thing, but knowing that results can vary wildly after the decision is made means quarterbacks need to have thick skin when it comes to dealing with repercussions from plays.

Although accountability is huge for a quarterback in the NFL, having a short-term memory when it comes to good decisions that don't work out is also important. Owning your mistakes but not letting them define your career is essential.

J.J. McCarthy has the opportunity to learn a lot as a rookie. Head coach Kevin O'Connell, quarterbacks coach Josh McCown, teammate Sam Darnold, and others have the experience to help the young quarterback grow and develop.