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2023 NFL Draft Prospects for Vikings: Quarterbacks

In the leadup to the 2023 NFL Draft, is taking a look at prospects who have garnered a range of attention from national outlets. The series will include rankings by those national outlets, stats and background information for multiple prospects.

Vikings status at quarterback

It's kind of funny that a year ago this series began with the phrase "after plenty of speculation about his future, Kirk Cousins remains with the Vikings."

Speculation has again swirled around the quarterback at different points of the offseason. The difference from a year ago is that Cousins is entering the final year of his contract. Last year, he had agreed to a one-year extension heading into his first with Head Coach Kevin O'Connell.

Cousins and the team have had conversations about the future, but the parties don't have an agreement.

O'Connell had been Cousins' position coach in Washington in 2017 and is now positioned to be the same play caller in consecutive seasons for the first time in Cousins' tenure with the Vikings (since 2018).

O'Connell and General Manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah held their pre-draft media session on April 13 and discussed the quarterback position at length.

Beyond Cousins, who tied an NFL record with eight fourth-quarter comebacks in 2022 and helped Minnesota go an NFL-record 11-0 in one-score games during the regular season, the Vikings have Nick Mullens under contract.

Mullens was acquired in a trade with Las Vegas last August after he suited up against Minnesota in the preseason opener for both teams.

Expert rankings's Daniel Jeremiah currently has five quarterbacks in his overall Top 50: 1. Bryce Young, 7. C.J. Stroud, 10. Anthony Richardson, 12. Will Levis and 44. Hendon Hooker.

ESPN's Mel Kiper, Jr., has four quarterbacks in his overall Top 25: 2. Young, 4. Levis, 5. Stroud and 6. Richardson.

Rankings for quarterbacks by Jeremiah, his NFL Media counterpart Bucky Brooks, Kiper, analytics site Pro Football Focus and The Athletic's Dane Brugler are listed below.

View photos of Vikings front office staff preparing for the 2023 NFL Draft in the Thomson Reuters Draft Room at the TCO Performance Center.


Note: Heights and weights are from each player's profile on (linked for each player's name).

QB Bryce Young, Alabama
QB Bryce Young, Alabama

School: Alabama | Year: Junior | Ht: 5-foot-10 | Wt: 204 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: QB1

Bucky Brooks: QB1

Mel Kiper, Jr.: QB1

Pro Football Focus: QB1

Dane Brugler: QB1

2022 stats: 12 games; 245-of-380 passing (64.5 percent), 3,328 yards, 32 TD, 5 INT, 163.2 NCAA passer rating; 49 rushes for 185 yards and 4 TD

Start to finish: Young received his first college offer while still in eighth grade when former Arizona Cardinals Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury was at Texas Tech. Ultimately, he opted to play for Nick Saban, and although Young didn't need to play in the Sugar Bowl, he capped his college career by completing 15 of 21 passes for 321 yards and five touchdowns.

QB C.J. Stroud, Ohio State
QB C.J. Stroud, Ohio State

School: Ohio State | Year: Redshirt Soph. | Ht: 6-foot-3 | Wt: 214 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: QB2

Bucky Brooks: QB2

Mel Kiper, Jr.: QB3

Pro Football Focus: QB3

Dane Brugler: QB2

2022 stats: 13 games; 258-of-389 passing (66.3 percent), 3,688 yards, 41 TD, 6 INT, 177.7 NCAA passer rating; 47 rushes for 108 yards

Scout's take: Jeremiah described Stroud as a "pure, natural thrower with outstanding production." Stroud impressed the former NFL scout with his delivery and layering of the football, but Jeremiah noted Stroud's "biggest issues arise when he has to move/reset and deliver the ball" because it can affect his accuracy.

QB Will Levis, Kentucky
QB Will Levis, Kentucky

School: Kentucky (after Penn State) | Year: Redshirt Sr. | Ht: 6-foot-4 | Wt: 229 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: QB4

Bucky Brooks: QB5

Mel Kiper, Jr.: QB2

Pro Football Focus: QB2

Dane Brugler: QB3

2022 stats: 11 games; 185-of-283 passing (65.4 percent), 2,406 yards, 19 TD, 10 INT, 151.9 NCAA passer rating; 72 rushes for minus-107 yards and 2 TD

Long lineage: Levis' father (football) and mother (two-time All-American in soccer) were college athletes. His grandfather David Kelley was a three-sport varsity athlete at UMass, and his great-grandfather Alva Kelley was an All-American football player for Cornell who later became head coach at Colgate, Hobart College and Brown.

QB Anthony Richardson, Florida
QB Anthony Richardson, Florida

School: Florida | Year: Redshirt Soph. | Ht: 6-foot-4 | Wt: 244 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: QB3

Bucky Brooks: QB4

Mel Kiper, Jr.: QB4

Pro Football Focus: QB4

Dane Brugler: QB4

2022 stats: 12 games; 176-of-327 passing (53.8 percent), 2,549 yards, 17 TD, 9 INT, 131.0 NCAA passer rating; 103 rushes for 654 yards and 9 TD

Light on experience, but not athleticism: Richardson spent just one season as Florida's starting quarterback, but he showed athleticism last fall, as well as during his workout at the 2023 NFL Scouting Combine, where he earned a 99 "athleticism score" from Next Gen Stats.

QB Hendon Hooker, Tennessee
QB Hendon Hooker, Tennessee

School: Tennessee (after Virginia Tech) | Year: Redshirt Sr. | Ht: 6-foot-3 | Wt: 217 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: QB5

Bucky Brooks: QB3

Mel Kiper, Jr.: QB5

Pro Football Focus: QB6

Dane Brugler: QB6

2022 stats: 11 games; 229-of-329 passing (69.6 percent), 3,135 yards, 27 TD, 2 INT, 175.5 NCAA passer rating; 104 rushes for 430 yards and 5 TD

Published author: Hooker worked with his brother to co-write a faith-based children's scripture book, The ABCs of Scripture for Athletes. It debuted during the 2021 holiday season.

QB Clayton Tune, Houston
QB Clayton Tune, Houston

School: Houston | Year: Senior | Ht: 6-foot-2 1/2 | Wt: 220 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: Not Ranked

Bucky Brooks: Not Ranked

Mel Kiper, Jr.: QB6

Pro Football Focus: QB9

Dane Brugler: QB9

2022 stats: 13 games; 334-of-496 passing (67.3 percent), 4,074 yards, 40 TD, 10 INT, 158.9 NCAA passer rating; 128 rushes for 544 yards and 5 TD

According to PFF: Tune tied with Bryce Young for the best passing grade (91.3) in FBS last season. He also led the American Athletic Conference in "big time throws" with 29 and passes dropped by teammates (31).

QB Tanner McKee, Stanford
QB Tanner McKee, Stanford

School: Stanford | Year: Redshirt Soph. | Ht: 6-foot-6 | Wt: 231 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: Not Ranked

Bucky Brooks: Not Ranked

Mel Kiper, Jr.: Not Ranked

Pro Football Focus: QB5

Dane Brugler: QB5

2022 stats: 12 games; 264-of-426 passing (62.0 percent), 2,947 yards, 13 TD, 8 INT, 126.4 NCAA passer rating; 74 rushes for minus-90 yards and 2 TD

Service, then Stanford: McKee served a two-year Latter-day Saints mission in Brazil (2018-19) before enrolling at Stanford and playing the same position as one of his favorites, Andrew Luck.

QB Stetson Bennett, Georgia
QB Stetson Bennett, Georgia

School: Georgia (before and after Jones College) | Year: Redshirt Sr. | Ht: 5-foot-11 | Wt: 192 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: Not Ranked

Bucky Brooks: Not Ranked

Mel Kiper, Jr.: QB7

Pro Football Focus: QB10

Dane Brugler: QB11

2022 stats: 15 games; 310-of-454 passing (68.3 percent), 4,127 yards, 27 TD, 7 INT, 160.8 NCAA passer rating; 57 rushes for 205 yards and 10 TD

Interesting comp:'s Lance Zierlein compared Bennett to Mullens, the Vikings backup QB. Zierlein noted that Bennett's age (he'll turn 26 in October) and lack of size could work against the two-time CFP Champion.

QB Jake Haener, Fresno State
QB Jake Haener, Fresno State

School: Fresno State (after Washington) | Year: Redshirt Sr. | Ht: 6-foot-0 | Wt: 207 pounds

Experts' Position Rankings

Daniel Jeremiah: Not Ranked

Bucky Brooks: Not Ranked

Mel Kiper, Jr.: QB8

Pro Football Focus: QB8

Dane Brugler: QB7

2022 stats: 10 games; 252-of-350 passing (72.0 percent), 2,896 yards, 20 TD, 3 INT, 158.6 NCAA passer rating; 46 rushes for minus-123 yards and 2 TD

Cinderella sequel?: We had a fan in the Vikings Mailbag recently suggest Holton Ahlers potentially becoming this year's Brock Purdy, but Brugler wrote his money for a similar Cinderella story is on Haener.

"Though he might not have ideal physical traits (which will hurt him on draft weekend), Haener has the field vision and natural accuracy to consistently throw receivers open," Brugler wrote. "He won't wilt against pressure and has the competitive makeup that will endear him to NFL coaches. At worst, he can be a resourceful backup in the Taylor Heinicke mold."


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Outlook for Vikings in the 2023 NFL Draft

Some mock drafts have had the Vikings trading up to take a swing at a quarterback like Levis or standing pat (or possibly even trading down) to tab Hooker.

Minnesota has five selections heading into next week's draft, so that's not much wiggle room to move up the board, but Adofo-Mensah has shown to be a creative problem solver.

With only two quarterbacks under contract, Minnesota could wait, address other positions early and use a latter-round pick on a player they are interested in developing.

Teams usually roster three or four QBs for the offseason/training camp/preseason before whittling down to two or three players.

Kiper also included Max Duggan, who led TCU to the title game, and UCLA's Dorian Thompson-Robinson to round out his top 10 at the position. Thompson-Robinson was listed 7th by Pro Football Focus and 14th by Brugler.

Brugler's biggest departure from the other experts was ranking Purdue's Aidan O'Connell at 8th. He put Duggan at 10, then added Shepherd's Tyson Bagent at 12th, BYU's Jaren Hall at 13th and Fordham's Tim DeMorat at 15th.