Kevin O’Connell and Kwesi Adofo-Mensah Did not Attend J.J. McCarthy’s Pro Day

Nov 5, 2023; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell on the sideline against the Atlanta Falcons in the second half at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

The 2024 NFL Draft is ripe with quarterback talent, and many expect the Minnesota Vikings to reap the benefits of one of these QB prospects.

A potential target for the Vikings this spring could be J.J. McCarthy, who is coming off a 15-0 season and national championship with the Michigan Wolverines. Michigan’s pro day was on Friday, and the Vikings’ new QB coach, Josh McCown, was in attendance. However, neither of Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell or general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah were at the event.

Vikings Head Coach Didn’t Attend J.J. McCarthy’s Pro Day

Vikings Head Coach
Dec 2, 2023; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Michigan Wolverines quarterback J.J. McCarthy (9) throws during the first quarter of the Big Ten Championship game against the Iowa Hawkeyes at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Miller of ESPN tweeted on Friday, “MICHIGAN pro day today. Nine general managers and seven head coaches are scheduled to attend. Not on that list? Vikings GM Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and head coach Kevin O’Connell.”

Of course, this does not mean that the Vikings aren’t paying close attention to the QB prospect. Albert Breer wrote on Monday that McCarthy and the Vikings have a private workout scheduled in the coming weeks before the draft.

This workout will allow Adofo-Mensah and O’Connell to get an exclusive look at McCarthy and do so away from the pro day environment, which can sometimes be a zoo of reporters, front office members, and coaches trying to get a glimpse at draft prospects.

Jan 8, 2024; Houston, TX, USA; Michigan Wolverines quarterback J.J. McCarthy (9) reacts during the second quarter against the Washington Huskies in the 2024 College Football Playoff national championship game at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

McCarthy is coming off a national championship run with the Michigan Wolverines in which he completed 72.3% of his passes for 2991 yards, 22 TDs and four interceptions. During his two-year starting career at Michigan, the Wolverines went a combined 28-1 with their only loss coming against TCU in the College Football Playoff during the 2022 season.

The quarterback led the FBS in completion percentage when throwing under pressure, per PFF, with a completion percentage above 63%. He has a very strong arm and is poised and always under control when facing duress.

Seeing as McCarthy only turned 21 years old in January, some of the holes that do exist in his game should be able to be smoothed over by a head coach, particularly one such as Kevin O’Connell, through development. His age also provides the opportunity for him to sit for a year or even two before being thrown into the starting lineup.

Sep 16, 2023; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; Michigan Wolverines quarterback J.J. McCarthy (9) throws against the Bowling Green Falcons in the first half at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Assuming the Vikings do draft a quarterback this spring, McCarthy’s name will be near the top of the list.

Editor’s Note: Statistics for this article were found via Pro Football Focus and Sports Reference CFB.

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.