Redrafting the Vikings rookie class after the 2023 regular season

Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Puka Nacua
Los Angeles Rams wide receiver Puka Nacua / Harry How/GettyImages
4 of 7

Fourth-Round Pick (134th Overall)

Original Pick: Jay Ward - S (LSU)
Re-Draft Pick: Aidan O'Connell - QB (Purdue)

Given their selection of Jaren Hall in the fifth round, the Vikings were clearly interested in drafting a quarterback on Day 3 of the 2023 draft that they could bring in and develop.

So in the fourth round of this re-draft, Minnesota goes with former Purdue quarterback Aidan O'Connell, who was actually selected by the Las Vegas Raiders one pick after the Vikings drafted former LSU safety Jay Ward last year.

Ward was unable to make much of an impact as a rookie with Minnesota this season, as most of his time on the field was spent on special teams.

He could get more opportunities on defense in 2024 if longtime Vikings safety Harrison Smith retires this year, but the jury is still out on that.

As for O'Connell, we know that Minnesota needed help from their backup quarterbacks in 2023 following the season-ending Achilles injury Kirk Cousins suffered in Week 8.

So going with a rookie signal-caller who was a pleasant surprise for the Raiders this season might have given the Vikings a better shot at sneaking into the 2023 playoffs or even winning the NFC North.

In 10 starts for Las Vegas this season, O'Connell completed 62.1 percent of his passes for 2,218 yards, 12 touchdowns, and seven interceptions. In his 10 starts, the Raiders posted a 5-5 record.