Vikings Rookie QB Jaren Hall Didn’t Put Up Gaudy Numbers in His Preseason Debut, and That’s Okay

Aug 3, 2023; Eagan, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Jaren Hall (16) practices during training camp at TCO Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings had their first preseason showing on Thursday night, taking on the Seattle Seahawks.

One of the players whom all fans had their eyes on coming into the game was Vikings rookie QB Jaren Hall. While it certainly wasn’t the most impressive showing on the statsheet (6-of-14 for 37 yards), there are plenty of positives to take away from this first game. Here are a couple things that stood out from his first NFL action.

Mobility and Improvisation

Vikings Rookie QB
Nov 26, 2022; Stanford, California, USA; Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Jaren Hall (3) runs the ball against Stanford Cardinal safety Alaka’i Gilman (33) during the second half at Stanford Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

Right away, it was clear that Hall has the ability to navigate around pressure. The rookie wasn’t fazed by a fierce Seattle pass-rush, especially for a player appearing in his first NFL action. This isn’t uncommon from his BYU days, either. Hall rushed for a total of 657 yards over the course of his two seasons as a starter for the Cougars and totaled 6 rushing TDs. Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell spoke on this during his postgame press conference Thursday night.

“What did flash to me was his athleticism, conflict resolution. There was plenty of it, and he was kind of able to at least [maybe] not extend plays for big gains, but sack-saving plays, getting out, spinning out when we missed a couple protection assignments.”

Touch on a Deep Ball

Nov 26, 2022; Stanford, California, USA; Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Jaren Hall (3) throws during warmups before a game against the Stanford Cardinal at Stanford Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

A knock on Hall coming into the NFL Draft was his arm strength. Being just 6 feet tall and a hair over 200 pounds, he certainly isn’t the biggest player out on the field. However, when Hall finally got the confidence to uncork a pass downfield, he nailed WR N’Keal Harry with a perfect pass for a 19-yard gain. Take a look:

Hall certainly has the talent to make big-time throws; it is simply a matter of making sure he has the confidence to attempt them. As the rookie continues to grow more comfortable in the Vikings offense, we should expect to see more of this accuracy downfield.

“Don’t Make the Bad Plays Worse”

Sep 3, 2022; Tampa, Florida, USA; Brigham Young Cougars quarterback Jaren Hall (3) looks to pass against the South Florida Bulls during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

Ultimately, this may be the most important takeaway from Hall’s performance. It would be easy to panic and try to force throws when the pressure comes, but the rookie didn’t do any of that. If a play wasn’t there, he was fine with getting the ball out of bounds rather than forcing a throw downfield.

While at BYU, Hall took extreme care of the ball. He finished his two years as a starter with 51 TD passes compared to only 11 interceptions. An ability to avoid making bad plays worse was one of the things that Kevin O’Connell raved about during his post-game press conference.

“The big key there is when you’re in those situations, can you find a way to not make a bad play worse, and I speak from direct experience on that. So, I was proud to see him do that.”

Sometimes, an incompletion is the best result.

Plenty of Work to Be Done

Mar 4, 2023; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Brigham Young quarterback Jaren Hall (QB06) participates in drills at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

At the end of the day, this game probably didn’t cause Hall to leap up the depth chart. That is entirely okay. We have to keep in mind that, while Hall is a 25-year-old QB, he is still a fifth-round rookie just trying to make it onto his first NFL roster.

Overall, there were positives signs from his first preseason performance, and while the kinks still have to be worked out in terms of execution on some throws, he has plenty of time to do so before being asked to step into a starting lineup.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.