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13 Days Before NFL Draft, JJ McCarthy Gets Defended by Author Who Went Through 2000 Prospects

Ayush Juneja

Vikings Rookie JJ McCarthy Becomes a Laughing Stock for Fans After His Training Footage Goes Viral

The highly anticipated 2024 NFL Draft is just 2 weeks away, with Detroit eagerly waiting for the arrival of the best college prospects. While Caleb Williams is locked at number one, with the Bears as his probable destination, the future of other picks and other QBs is still up in the air. Most analysts and former players agree on Jayden Daniels and Drake Maye’s inclusion in the top three places in the draft, but the name of JJ McCarthy continues to leave fans and experts divided.

McCarthy’s rise in the last few weeks has been mind-boggling, but concerns about his arm talent, and insufficient passing attempts during his college days, still leave many unconvinced about his inclusion in the top 10 let alone the top five. Some are even saying that he doesn’t deserve to be a first-round pick, and any GM that picks him with a top pick will likely get fired. However, JJ has a backer in Dane Brugler of The Athletic, who is convinced by Michigan’s QB intangibles, which aren’t visible on his game tape.

Brugler, the author of ‘The Beast’, who has also released 400 scouting reports, recently appeared on The Herd with Colin Cowherd, where the duo delved into the weaknesses and strengths of all college prospects, who declared for the draft, including McCarthy. The author asserted that while criticism to a point is acceptable and fair, as people expect from a QB touted as the top pick, it is hard to ignore the way Michigan’s offense was built. They dominated the run game and played a physical brand of football. But a closer look at McCarthy’s plays on 3rd and 4th downs will tell you that he made plays when the team required him to.

While wins and losses are team stats, the franchise and coaches in the NFL still put a lot of weight on it and it’s hard to ignore JJ’s record in school and college as a starter. Those are ‘intangible factors’ that coaches love to have. Combined with his tools and abilities; will give you a reason why teams are keen on drafting him.

“I am a big 10 guy and watching Ohio State demolish Michigan over the last 20 years, but when JJ came in, it just felt a little bit different,” Brugler stated. “Like they had a QB that on 3rd down, 4th down could go make plays when they needed him to. When he was called upon, he went and made plays and so I am very encouraged by what he was asked to do on those crunch time throws. Fans roll their eyes at the win-loss record, but teams care about it. In high school, 36-2 with the State Championship, in college 27-1 with the National Championship. That’s the intangible factor with JJ McCarthy; has won over a lot of coaches.”

Given the lack of options in the QB market, teams are willing to offer more than they are expected to draft him. And it won’t come as a surprise if teams like the Vikings, Broncos, or even Patriots draft him earlier than his expected position in the draft.

JJ McCarthy NFL Prediction

As per Athlon Sports, ESPN’s Mel Kiper puts McCarthy at number 5 in his latest draft predictions. However, not everyone agrees with it. Luke Easterling of Sports Illustrated predicts that JJ will not get picked in the first round. Jordan Reid puts him at 12th while Middlehurst-Schwartz and Ryan Wilson, both place him 13th on the board. Because demand outweighs the supply, the teams have no option but to move up to draft him.

If he does get drafted at 5th, the pick that the Chargers currently hold; will trade down since they have more pressing needs like Tackle, receivers, etc. The Vikings, Broncos, Giants, and Raiders are teams that are keen to draft a QB and would be up for a trade if McCarthy gets swept off his feat in the first round. As per Athlon Sports, the Vikings might have to give up their two 2024 first-round picks and one from 2025 if they go for McCarthy.

Though the Giants hold the 6th pick and might have moved just a spot up, the Chargers can fleece them by making them give up a couple of more picks in later rounds. While JJ McCarthy has the talent and attributes to make him a success with the right weapons, we have seen this many times in the past few years. When teams moved up for QB, whose draft stock rose as the draft got closer, many of them turned out busts because teams were desperate and didn’t do proper homework on them. This could very well be the case with JJ if a team with no supporting weapons drafted him. Bryce Young, Josh Rosen, Tim Tebow, Mac Jones, Zach Wilson, Mitch Trubisky, etc. The list is endless.

About the author

Ayush Juneja

Ayush Juneja


Ayush Juneja is an NFL Journalist at the SportsRush. New to Gridiron, he has been following the sport for past 9 months and has authored over 400 articles so far. As a sports enthusiast and a true adrenaline junkie, he finds the physical side of sports to be more thrilling and engaging. A big fan of Liverpool F.C., he now roots for another red team in San Francisco 49ers and would love to see a match at Levi's Stadium and Michigan Stadium. American culture and politics fascinates him and would love to experience it first hand.

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