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Vikings' McCarthy excited by minicamp: 'Didn't feel like my 1st day'

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The Minnesota Vikings kicked off their rookie minicamp Friday, but first-year quarterback J.J. McCarthy didn't feel any pressure as he began his transition to the NFL.

"It didn't feel like my first day," McCarthy said, according to ESPN's Kevin Seifert. "I've been going over the offense for a long time now. So, being able to (go) out there and perform and execute, that's new, but it was nothing that was overwhelming or too much."

The Vikings - who saw their former starter, Kirk Cousins, sign with the Atlanta Falcons this offseason - drafted McCarthy 10th overall last month as the fifth quarterback off the board. The 21-year-old joined a Minnesota QB depth chart that has questions with Sam Darnold, Nick Mullens, and Jaren Hall in the mix.

Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell - a former NFL quarterback - liked what he saw from McCarthy on Friday.

"He's trying to have the best possible day that he can today and then try to do the same thing tomorrow," O'Connell said. "This guy is a process-driven guy and understands that there's a long road ahead of him, that we're just trying to make incremental gains that will be solidified as part of how he plays quarterback for a long time. So, I've been really impressed with him so far and look forward to get another full day tomorrow."

McCarthy helped Michigan win the national title last year and significantly bolstered his draft stock this offseason. He passed for 22 touchdowns against four interceptions with a 72.3% completion rate in 2023.

Injuries were an issue for the Vikings in 2023 and forced the team to start four different quarterbacks throughout the season. Minnesota finished the campaign with a 7-10 record and missed the playoffs for the third time in the last four years.

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