Vikings reveal major steps J.J. McCarthy has taken in OTAs this spring

Minnesota Vikings QB J.J. McCarthy
Minnesota Vikings QB J.J. McCarthy / Adam Bettcher/GettyImages

During the last few weeks, the Minnesota Vikings have begun the process of turning J.J. McCarthy into the franchise's next great quarterback.

After selecting him with the 10th overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft earlier this year, the Vikings' plan with McCarthy has been to ease him into their offense as necessary as possible. Minnesota doesn't feel the need to rush someone onto the field who they hope will be leading their team from under center for the next decade or more.

But if McCarthy is progressing faster than the Vikings might have anticipated, then keeping him off of the field next season might not be so easy, especially if the team is struggling.

J.J. McCarthy has had reps with members of the Minnesota Vikings first-team offense in OTAs

During an appearance on "The Rich Eisen Show" on Monday, Minnesota head coach Kevin O'Connell revealed how McCarthy's initial stage of development with the team has been going.

"He's had a great spring. He's off to a really good start transitioning into a new offense [with a] bunch of new teammates [and] new players. He gets a ton of work throughout routes on air and even in 7-on-7 [drills] where we were going full speed on all that stuff with some of the first group throughout the spring.

So, [McCarthy's] gotten a good acclimation to what our offense is really all about. He's starting to show some ownership of it, and [he's] growing every single day."

In case anyone missed it, O'Connell casually mentioned that McCarthy has had the opportunity to work with some of the members of the Vikings first-team offense in this year's OTAs.

It could be nothing, but it could also be a sign that O'Connell and Minnesota's coaching staff are already comfortable with giving the rookie quarterback some time to work with the team's top pass-catchers.

O'Connell also shared how McCarthy has been pretty much everything the Vikings had been hoping for when they selected him with their top pick in this year's draft.

"I can just tell you everything so far we had hoped to get outta J.J. from the spring [confirmed] a lot of the things we thought about him throughout the pre-draft process.

He's done all those things and then some. He's been wearing us out at the facility. He is working his tail off and I think he's gonna be in a great spot to continue his growth and development."

Whether McCarthy will be ready to start in Week 1 next season or not, Minnesota sounds very pleased with the progress that he's made so far, and that should help keep people excited about his future with the franchise.

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