Veteran QB named favorite to replace Vikings’ Josh Dobbs

Following their Week 13 bye, the Minnesota Vikings are unlikely to make significant changes to their offensive scheme, which could result in the team deciding against starting quarterback Josh Dobbs.

Ben Goessling of the Star Tribune reports that Nick Mullens, who has played in Kevin O’Connell’s offense for two seasons, will start for the Vikings going forward at quarterback.

“If our inability to run our offense the way we want it to is your biggest problem, then it’s that we’re turning the ball over. The best method to get a glimpse of that back is to insert the player with the most offense-related experience, someone who can play the offense somewhat like Kirk Cousins. In an episode of the “Access Vikings” podcast broadcast on November 30, Goessling mentioned a man who Kirk Cousins has complimented for assisting him in picking up the subtleties of the offense.

Dobbs dazzled the NFL during his first two weeks in Minnesota, shining in wins over the Atlanta Falcons and the New Orleans Saints before crashing back down to earth. In the Vikings’ past two games, both losses, Dobbs has turned the ball over six times, leading O’Connell to reconsider who his starter will be for the rest of the season.

“I just tend to believe that Nick Mullens will end up being the safe, dependable family car in the garage that (won’t) wow anybody if they are as irritated by the inefficiency, and especially the turnovers, as they seem to be. That’s not something you would drive on the Autobahn. However, it has all the safety features, low insurance costs, and a respectable gas mileage. I’m aware that most people won’t want to hear that. I simply believe that those items might appeal to them, particularly at this particular time.

Nick Mullens Gives Vikings Best Chance at Maximizing Justin Jefferson


Nick Mullens, Vikings

GettyQuarterback Nick Mullens of the Minnesota Vikings looks on against the Tennessee Titans in the first half during a preseason game at U.S. Bank Stadium on August 19, 2023 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.


A day after Dobbs threw four interceptions in an embarrassing 12-10 loss to the Chicago Bears on Monday, November 27, O’Connell doubled down on his decision that he will take a look at his options at quarterback moving forward.

He notably said that the quarterback he chooses will be the one who maximizes Justin Jefferson, who is expected to make his return Week 14 against the Las Vegas Raiders.

“We will ensure that the quarterback, whoever he or she may be, is aware of and comprehends the playbook when it comes to plays where Justin is the primary target or, depending on coverage and the defensive look, how to get to the ball in a hurry and effectively,” O’Connell stated on November 28, as reported by ESPN. “Rhythm, timing, and realizing that the defense can and will take some things away are ultimately what the NFL passing game is all about,” the player said.

After five seasons with Kirk Cousins at quarterback, Dobbs’ ability to scramble opened the eyes and possibilities for the Vikings offense. However, Goessling stated that it is unrealistic to make major changes this late in the season.

“You’re not going to fundamentally remake everything at this point,” Goessling said. “You don’t have the capacity to make all these major changes. A lot of this is who can do what we have committed to doing best: building an offense around Jefferson; delivering the ball in the pocket.”

 Jaren Hall: The Vikings’ Mystery QB


Jaren Hall, Vikings

GettyQuarterback Jaren Hall of the Minnesota Vikings throws the ball in the first quarter against the Arizona Cardinals in a preseason game at U.S. Bank Stadium on August 26, 2023 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.


Of the Vikings’ three options at quarterback, rookie Jaren Hall is the wild card of the group.

A fifth-round pick in last April’s draft, Hall has physical limitations that would make it difficult to pen him as a future Pro Bowler.

But when Mullens was out due to a back injury in Week 9, and Dobbs had just arrived in Minnesota, he showed skill and efficiency in his first career start.

On the Falcons’ opening drive, Hall completed five of six pass attempts for 83 yards before being hit at the goal line and sustaining a concussion. Ever since, Dobbs has started every snap at center for the Vikings, with varying degrees of success. In his six years in the league, Mullens has a 5-12 career record, making him another well-known player.

There are still questions surrounding Hall, and while the plan was not for him to start his rookie year, the Vikings could get an even clearer look at their quarterback situation of the future by embracing the mystery of starting the rookie QB.

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